The Strangest of Places

Never really knowing anyone’s name for long;
Everyone moves eventually
In this little bunch of circles off a street.
Gone faster than you can even learn some of their names.
Happy here in a way we haven’t been…ever.
But knowing that here is just like many other places
Or maybe we’ll luck out and find another home
Right where we least expected it.
Half of the adults rarely meet, yet all the children are kept in sight.
Oh, how does such a place where no one knows who you are
Or where you come from still be as safe as can be?
Dynamics of a place where every child is precious, even when they aren’t your own.

Written for today’s Daily Post prompt and because this is kind of what my little neighborhood is like. Only people that don’t live here drive the full 25 mph; everyone else drives at something like 10 mph because small children and dogs sometimes chase balls and other toys out into the street. Most of the dogs have some kind of pit bull in them, but every single dog that gets out (again, most of them) are probably some of the sweetest dogs I have ever met (and once I had a Golden Retriever puppy who thought that my siblings were¬†her puppies.)

This is probably one of the friendliest neighborhoods I have ever lived in and also the only one where I never know the names of the adults, but know the names of most of the children.



No First Day Jitters

She smoothed down her hair and settled the skirt that Kelly was wearing. Kelly giggled and swung their joined hands once they’d left the house.

“Kelly, my love, you seem more excited than me.” her voice was warm as her daughter skipped alongside her, hand still firmly in her mother’s.

“Course I am, Mama! It’s the first day of school!”

She nodded to any others in the halls once they’d entered the building that wasn’t far from their small home. She had chosen a house close enough to walk to her new job at. The Junior High that she had been hired at had a day school for children not yet old enough to attend the community’s kindergarten. That as well as the small military fort just outside of the seemingly small town’s borders helped her to feel safe even if the odds of said people being able to protect her and her child weren’t good.

She listened to Kelly’s chattering through the school’s halls on the way to the rooms that the day school was held in. The day classes were a small part of the school’s child development program, but from what she had been able to discern from the few people she had already met (and if she was being honest, the few waves of intent she had sent out) she knew that her Kelly would be safe.

After dropping Kelly off with her new teacher, and boy had Kelly made a lovely impression with her exuberance! She turned her path back towards the main entrance hall of the school. There she found the library and let herself in with the small key she had been given at the end of the hiring process.

There were already a few teens waiting for her to open up the small library and they were more than willing to chat with the new librarian for a few minutes while she finished opening the doors.

“I’m glad you were able to come in so early on your first day!” more than one of them took the time to tell her after introducing themselves, “The last librarian was always opening the library maybe ten minutes before the first bell rang, Ms. Smith!”

She smiled, “You don’t have to be so formal all the time,” she would tell a few of them, “I’m not just Ms. Smith, call me Hailey.”

She’d always felt more comfortable around children, no matter what age they were, than she had with adults. They didn’t feel threatening, even if they had threatened her, which none of these teens had done.

One boy smirked playfully, “Whatever you say, Ms. Hailey.”

Written for this week’s FreeWriteFriday prompt.