Zoey had heard rumors that new kids were moving into the vacant house across the street. The house had been empty for a couple months. In the evenings it always looked so dark and scary. Zoey tried to not look that way if she could help it. She really hoped a big family was moving into the neighborhood. Her wish was that they would have lots of kids. She was also hoping for a dragon just like her. She was telling me all about it one day. I felt bad for her because she had her heart set on a new dragon moving in. We couldn’t convince her otherwise. What are the odds of a dragon living with the new family on the block? I say not good but Zoey wouldn’t listen.
Bernard was always busy studying. Deuce and I spent a lot of time at home because we had a curfew. Deuce has a tendency to get into trouble so mom said on school nights we had to be home by 7:00 pm and not a minute past. That left Zoey with nobody to play with.
I knew Zoey was lonely but there was nothing we could do. She watched TV a lot and sometimes played rummy with her mom. As soon as the rumors started flying around about the new people Zoey started getting excited. She listened to every piece of gossip she could come by. Since the house was so big she knew there was room for a big family.
Early one morning right after breakfast Zoey heard a big truck. She ran to the window and looked out. It was a moving truck. The truck was sitting in front of the house across the street. Zoey’s heart was beating a mile a minute. She asked her mom if she could go outside. Her mom told her to stay in the house out of the way. Zoey did the only thing she could think of. She peeked out from behind the living room curtain to see what was going on. If there was one thing Zoey was good at it was investigating what was going on in the neighborhood. There were at least 3 kids that she could see. She saw lots of movers carrying big pieces of furniture. She had even seen a big screen TV. It would be perfect for her to watch her cartoons on. This was so exciting. It was hard to see because the big truck was blocking her view. Mom walked in the room and saw what Zoey was doing. She told Zoey that as soon as the big truck pulled away she could go out to play.
Zoey called me on the phone with the big news. She told me there were at least 3 kids, a big screen TV and she thought she’d seen a ping pong table. Now that excited me! I love ping pong. It’s not easy playing with Zoey though because she always wants to win. I wonder how the new kids will feel about Zoey’s game rules. She’d already broken my ping pong table! Her ping pong table! And to top it off the kid down the street’s table. Well at least the neighborhood would have somebody with a ping pong table.
It seemed like hours before the big truck pulled away from the big house. The second it turned the corner Zoey was out the door. She didn’t want to make herself too obvious so she sat down on the swing on the porch. She was holding one of mom’s magazines and tried to look as nonchalant as a pink dragon could. She held the magazine up and was looking over the top of it. She was straining her neck to see what was going on. There were 4 kids for sure. That was even better. Two girls and two boys. They had gone in the house but Zoey was taking notes. Their dad drove a big truck and there was a car in the garage. She figured that was their mom’s.
Zoey’s mom came out with a cake and asked Zoey if she wanted to go with her to welcome the neighbors. Zoey jumped up and ran down the stairs. Her mom knocked on the front door and a little boy opened the screen door. He motioned for them to come in. As Zoey entered the living room she took everything in with one swift glance. A lot of things were in boxes but she did see the big screen TV. As luck would have it cartoons were on and the kids were sitting on the couch watching Zoey’s favorite cartoon. One of the boys motioned for her to come over and sit down and watch cartoons with them. Zoey snuggled up between all the kids on the big couch and started laughing at a funny part on the TV screen. Mom went in the kitchen with her cake. Zoey felt like she was home. This was nice. All her new friends right here on the couch with her.
Zoey couldn’t believe her eyes when a purple dragon walked into the room. She smiled and said hi. The little purple dragon’s name was Milly. Milly was small for her age but very nice. She had a beautiful set of beads around her neck that Zoey really admired. When Zoey complimented her on her beautiful necklace Milly turned bright pink and said thank you. As Zoey sat there with the kids and Milly all she could think was how happy she was to have found a such a wonderful family. She heard her mom laughing in the kitchen. That was definitely a good sign. The kid’s mom yelled for everybody to come and get some cake. They all got up and ran into the kitchen at the same time. Milly and Zoey sat together and really enjoyed their cake. They started laughing and talking at the same time. Milly’s mom told her not to eat and talk at the same time. Everyone started laughing. For the rest of the evening Milly and Zoey were like two peas in a pod. They played and talked and had a really good time.
When It was time to leave Zoey was very sad. She was tired though and her mom promised she could come back another day. She went straight home to bed. It had been a busy day and she had made so many new friends. Zoey called me just before she went to bed. I got to hear all the news of the day. I was so happy to hear the neighborhood had a new dragon. It sounded to me like Zoey had made a lot of new friends.
Zoey said that finally the house across the street was lit up at night. She wouldn’t be afraid to look over at the big, old house. She was making so many plans for her dear friend Milly and Milly’s family.
The next day was Saturday so I got up early to go meet our new neighbors. When I knocked on the door I heard running and then the door opened. There stood Milly as purple as could be. Milly had dark hair which was the opposite of Zoey who had blond hair. She invited me in and I introduced myself. I got to meet all the kids and their mom. I’m not sure where their dad was. Milly seemed so excited that she’d made some new friends. She told me that she was going to take her bike out later and check out the new neighborhood. I offered to go with her but she said Zoey was going to ride bikes with her. We went around the back of the house and Milly showed me her bike. It was a big purple bike with a big basket. I had to smile because it was just like Zoey’s bike but her’s was pink. I left for home because Milly said she was going to get ready for her bike ride.
Zoey arrived early to play with Milly. She had her pink bike and she was wearing pink riding shorts and her pink baseball cap. Her shirt was bright pink. It was her favorite shirt and she wanted to show it to her new friend. Zoey wanted to be like Milly so she had borrowed a colorful strand of beads from her mom. She was wearing them around her neck. Milly complimented Zoey on her beautiful beads and Zoey smiled from ear to ear. She would have to thank mom later for letting her borrow her beads. Milly was dressed in all purple. Purple tights and purple short shorts, and a big purple shirt. She also wore a big, floppy purple sun hat. She looked very stylish to Zoey.
Zoey’s bike basket was filled with her treasures. She had her dolls which all had blond hair like her. There was a troll doll in there and it had blond hair too. Her favorite jump rope and ball were in there too. She even had a picture book in her basket. Zoey loved books but only the picture ones. Bernard was the reader in the family. Milly rode her bike around to the front porch and started putting her favorite things in her basket. Her dolls had dark hair and she had a troll doll too but it also had dark hair. She had a purple jump rope that she placed in her basket along with a purple ball. When Milly saw Zoey’s picture book she ran back in the house and got her book and put it in her basket. Milly’s mom gave them each a bottle of water and a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. When they started out to cruise the neighborhood it was somewhere around 10:00am.
They rode their bikes up and down the streets. They stopped at different kids houses so Zoey could introduce Milly to all the kids. They stopped at my house and Deuce was so happy because he got to meet the new dragon in town. When they left our house they said they were going over to the park. It was so nice to see Zoey so happy. Milly moving into the neighborhood was the best thing that could have happened to Zoey.
The two dragons slowly cruised the park. Zoey showed Milly where the swings were and the volleyball court. She failed to mention all the commotion she had caused during the last volleyball game. Some things are better left unsaid. When Zoey called to tell me about her bike ride I could tell she had been on her best behavior. There were no incidents whatsoever. I had this thought that Milly would be a good influence on Zoey. Maybe she’d tone her behavior down just a little and get in less trouble.
On Sunday afternoon Milly invited Zoey over for a ping pong game. Zoey called me and said to bring Deuce and meet her over at Milly’s. Deuce and I rode our bikes over and the plan was to watch them play ping pong. I was a little nervous because I knew Zoey thought she was the best player ever. This could go so wrong. Everything was going pretty good and we were all having a good time. Things went downhill when Milly won the game. Milly excelled at ping pong and must have had a lot of practice becasue she was very good. When Milly jumped up shouting that she won I looked over at Zoey who had a very dark look on her face. I thought oh no! Here we go again! Zoey was just getting ready to pick up the ping pong table and throw it through the yard into the neighbor’s yard when Milly’s dad came around the corner into the backyard. Milly yelled hi dad and I saw Zoey slowly put the table back down on the ground. It had been a close one for sure but at least the table was still in one piece. Later I was going to take Milly aside and tell her about Zoey’s zest for winning. It was just a miracle that her dad had arrived at just the right time.
Everyone left Milly’s at supper time. As Deuce and I rode our bikes home we talked about the new family in the neighborhood. We thought it was a good thing that Zoey had a new group of friends. We liked the kids and Milly. Now if we could just keep Zoey from acting up this could really be a great friendship. We both laughed about what happened when we waved by to Zoey at the end of her driveway. She was so tired she just kind of gave us a half wave as she slowly went into her house. Keeping her busy was a very good thing.
The moral to this story is that we should all welcome new neighbors into our neighborhoods. Go out of your way to make them feel welcome. They may be different than you or me and that’s okay. They could end up being the best neighbors in the whole wide world.