Nancy L. Meek
THE TRAILER PARK JUNGLE
It appears the new neighbor in the trailer park is having a problem adjusting to the sounds of their new environment…… the trailer park jungle.
Trailer parks are inherent for creating a noise level unlike a neighborhood consisting of brick homes. Also, homes situated in a “country” environment are surrounded by their own unique noises. I, personally, have experienced trailer park living. The walls are thin and the distance between homes is minimal. Couple this with being “new in the neighborhood” and you find yourself faced with the very human experience called “adaptation”. Humans are very adaptable creatures, although some can adjust to their new surroundings more readily than others can.
They say, “A man’s home is his castle” and when he hears a commotion beyond his moat, it is only natural to be concerned as to the extent the commotion will interfere with his life within his castle walls. However, when you know another man’s castle sits immediately next to your own and you have no intention of moving out, you have only a few choices left: burn them out, harass them into leaving, or try to adapt. Since arson is illegal, unethical, immoral (not to mention stupid, because of the close proximity of the two dwellings), this first choice is not an option to civilized individuals. Harassment sometimes works and sometimes not, depending on many variables: the personalities of the established residents, their financial status, and the legitimacy of the harassment. Some people are stubborn and “just love a good fight”; but for the most part, I believe most who live in mobile home parks want to get along. Finding that common ground, however, can sometimes be difficult. Some have no choice, financially, to move out to a less-intrusive neighborhood. Some will not be bullied-out either by undue harassment. Some love living in mobile home parks where there is a feeling of a small community; helping each other, watching out for each other and otherwise enjoying the advantages of having good neighbors near.
Then there is the new neighbor, who has to find his niche (by whatever means he has available). The new neighbor is sometimes labeled as “strange” and in a sense; he is strange, as in the word “stranger”, until he has lived there for a while and everyone gets to “know each other”. If the new neighbor did not really want to be moving into the park at all, this would explain some of the complaints expressed against the established residents. Adjusting to unfamiliar sounds can be difficult, also, during the first few months.
I used to live by a train track. During the first few months, I had trouble getting to sleep because of the rattle of the wheels on the tracks and the trains whistle interrupting my ability to doze off. Then, over time, I adapted to the sounds, eventually learning to “tune out” the “noise”. When friends would stay the night, a complaint would usually come in the morning in the form of, “How can you sleep at night with all that noise?!” My immediate response would be, “What do you mean – what noise?” I had adapted to the sound of the trains, developing a sort of “comfort” in them being there, for they were part of what I came to call “home”. I no longer live so close to a train track; but when I do hear the distant sound of the “2:30 A.M. Special” whistling across the other side of town, I still get a comforting feeling of the old home in which I used to live.
I know, of course, that all “noises” are not comforting and are not intended to be; but when moving into a new neighborhood, you will be faced with new ones, some over which you have no control and some you do. Until you can learn which ones to worry about and which ones to “tune out”, a lot of patience is needed, especially in a mobile home park. If you cannot adapt to this, maybe park living is not for you.
To remain a civilized society, we must all try to get along. The benefits far outweigh the disadvantages of the only other option. The phrase, “It’s a jungle out there” must never be allowed to become the truth, because most people would not be able to handle the truth! Humans are more intelligent than animals in the jungle; and being more intelligent, we should live in a manner reflecting that. Living in a mobile home park can be a wonderful experience if we work at it; and besides, the last time I checked, there’s still no pizza deliveries made into the jungle.
Have a great day!
©Copyright February 24, 2002 by Nancy L. Meek