I don’t know what universal good luck card we pulled in 2004 when we bought this house, and I’m not sure how come we played it so well, but I think we might have the best neighbours on the planet. We live at the very end of a cul-de-sac. Neighbours are important. All of ours (with the exception of one set on the street behind us, inaccessible because of the ravine) are marvellous.

We’ve shared many meals and bottles of wine (and the occasional night out watching a certain go-go dancer at a lesbian nightclub–I had fun explaining the approved method of tipping), met children and parents and in-laws, shared ice-slick drives to the supermarket in dire times, trundled each other’s garbage bins up the driveway, watched cats, and checked during power outtages. And yesterday, one neighbour decided Kelley and I were looking a bit peaky, that we’d been working too hard, and she brought round a huge platter of Cornish game hens and couscous (with dates, cranberries, currants, squash, possibly cherries…) plus two chunks of delicious chocolate cake.

Kelley finished an act of her screenplay; I finally wrote the assassination attempt (of Edwin of Northumbria) scene I’ve been aiming at for a week. We beamed at each other. Drank beer. Scoffed a vast amount of food. Beamed some more. Then Kelley half dozed, half mused on screenplay stuff in front of the fire while I watched over her and read most of Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander–a straight romance time travel novel which I’m enjoying immensely.

That’s it. I just wanted to share.