Some weeks ago, we realised that it was very quiet in the house that is adjoined to ours. We hadn't heard Spirit the dog padding about or barking. We hadn't seen Sean for some time. We concluded that they were perhaps away on holiday, or maybe had moved.
Time went on. We still heard and saw no sign of them. Clearly they had moved. We thought it a bit strange that Sean hadn't said goodbye. We hadn't seen a whole lot of him but we had got on quite well. Still, these things happen. People do move without saying goodbye sometimes. And people in rental properties often move at short notice, without necessarily having chance to catch up with their neighbours before they go.
The house next door sat empty and silent.
Then one day The Builder saw the owner of the house outside. It seems that Sean (and therefore Spirit) had disappeared with unseemly haste. Indeed, it is alleged that they had Done a Runner. That would go some way to explaining Sean not saying goodbye!
The owners have since spent a bit of time renovating the house - and we have been waiting for a "To Let" sign to go up outside.
Yesterday, we took advantage of a break in the "showers" when I got back from work to go out and inspect the garden. And in the garden next door there was a young couple who are to be our new neighbours. They seem quite pleasant. They have dogs and a new-ish baby. They were about to come round and ask if we had any objections to them having some chickens (no objections from us, as long as they don't object to ours - and to the possible arrival of a couple of ducks). They greeted Marlo, who came to see who we were talking to, and hoped that he wouldn't be harmed by their dogs. We are not concerned about this. He managed to evade Spirit and has reached an "Understanding" with Max on the other side (as in - I'll torment you and you will never be able to catch me). They seem a very pleasant couple.
They're moving in on Saturday week. We shall be in London, but I'll try and remember to drop by with some biscuits or a cake or something when we get back.