I live about halfway down my street. It's not a big street, in fact, it's an avenue. It even has a few trees in it, which sway terrifyingly in high winds and faithfully deposit sticky stuff on your car every spring and summer. I can walk to either end of my street in about thirty seconds. I can amble it in under a minute. So by most standards it's not a big street at all.
And yet, there are people who live in my street I have never seen or met in ten years of living there. There are some I can stop and have a chat with, some of them I'm on merely nodding terms with. (Most of them I can never remember their names, though my wife can. I think that might be something to do with my brain though, as I can still remember how to do Atic Atac.) There are some I wish I saw and heard less of, like the Incredible Fighting Lesbians and the Staring Man, but there must be three or four houses whose occupants I have never seen. How can this be? I mean, they could be working odd hours, but not all the time. There are lights on sometimes, so I know people live there.
I can only assume they spend their time on the Internet writing about the bloke across the road who has a benny at the lawnmower when it cuts out and swore at his car that day. Or perhaps they are as unaware of me as I am of them, suspicious of the house across the road where they sometimes see the lights on but never see anyone. I find this hard to believe as my kids make at least as much noise as the Incredible Fighting Lesbians and leave a trail of debris as wide as the Titanic. Coats, sweet wrappers, plasticine, bikes, scooters, odd-shaped sticks and a variety of sticky foodstuffs are all cast aside in their wake. I'm thinking of getting a small street sweeping vehicle as my next car.
Anyway, people who I never see on my street. Centuries-ancient Lancastrian suburban vampires or nervous ex-mafia supergrasses relocated to provincial north west England? Possibly.