Those who danced were thought to be quite insane by those who could not hear the music.
The day we moved into our house my dog wandered into the neighbor’s yard, and Erich introduced himself by walking her home and then “talking” to her with the most perfectly imitated Labrador bark I have ever heard. He barked better than she did. He then welcomed us to the tribe of the Baybarians and invited us to a party. Not bad for day one.
He also told Mr. G that day that the rule in the cul-de-sac was that he would shovel snow off our driveway in exchange for good scotch. But if he shoveled 3 times without payment he got to “keep your women.” Erich was delightfully eccentric, and I was hooked.
Over the last couple of years we have come to adore all our neighbors. Especially Erich, his roommate Doug (“We’re roommates! Not gay! Not that there’s anything wrong with that!” is their standard into), and their girlfriends Gail and Deb. A great day was one where all the neighbors ended up sitting in someone’s front yard having a beer. Or on the delightful occasions where we sat around the firepit in one of the Baybarians’ backyards and told stories. Erich had a lot of stories. Especially about his annual guy trip, “Manly in Stanley,” his band of friends who were family, bike rides, and what he remembered of the 70’s. (Spotty.)
It was a terrible shock to get the news on Saturday that Erich had died suddenly in his sleep. We are so sad. So shocked. I think when someone who is a little bit larger than life passes from this world it’s that much harder to wrap your brain around how things can go on without them. I am without words to tell you how empty our little cul-de-sac is without our neighbor we loved.
I'm going to post a video of Erich talking about his recumbant bike above this one. He starts out by barking...
Rest in Peace Erich. Nah…scratch that. Give ‘em a little hell.