I'm a single Hispanic guy in my mid 30s living by myself in suburban America. I own a home in the kind of neighborhood where you have to get HOA permission to do just about anything, including chopping down a tree. I'm a white collar worker and lead a pretty boring life. I don't throw loud crazy parties or do anything that would annoy my neighbors. I maintain my lawn. I've owned this house just over a year.
Not a single neighbor has taken the time to try to get to know me. When I was moving in an old lady stopped her car and instead of introducing herself she started yeling at me about some trash left in the front yard by the prior owners. There was nothing against the rules about it. You're allowed to leave it out the day before so long as you've called the city to have the heavy trash unit come out and get it, which they did.
I left the country on business a month or two after I moved in and I knocked on my next door neighbor's house. I introduced myself and gave him my cell phone number in case somebody needed to get a hold of me while I was gone. He was very nice. I've since knocked on his door a few times to deliver mail that was accidentally put in my mailbox and he's been curt with me. Not overly rude, but not friendly either.
My other next door neighbor appears to be a single mother with a bunch of kids. There might be a husband, but I've never seen anyone other than her and her four or five kids. She stares at the ground when she walks out of her house like she's avoiding making eye contact on purpose. There is a neighborhood website and I started a thread there about termites. We communicated and she even gave me a recommendation on a pest control company. Still, whenever I see her, she stares at the ground.
An ice cream truck stopped in front of my house a while back and I used it as an opportunity to make conversation with my neighbor across the street. It was very short and awkward. He didn't seem to have any interest beyond being polite. I never heard from him again.
This isn't the first house I've owned. I owned a home in a different state and the reception was much the same. Instead of the neighborhood being populated by 30/40 something year old couples with a bunch of kids, it was mostly populated by older people. With the exception of one friendly woman who stopped to introduce herself, I got the cold shoulder from everyone. I even spotted a neighbor across the street peering out of her window one day when I was working on the lawn. My dad came for a prolonged visit once and brought his dog. Within a few days there was an unsigned hand written note on my door complaining about the dog barking.
This is a very long way of introducing my question: Does this sound normal to you? Do people normally have some kind of a relationship with their neighbors?
It could be that people just tend to keep to themselves and there's nothing out of the ordinary here, but I fear people might see a single Hispanic guy who drives a sports car and assume he's a drug runner or some such thing. There was a guy who once told me a single guy living in a family neighborhood might make parents fear he's some kind of pervert. It had never crossed my mind, but maybe that expalins some of it.
Your thoughts are appreciated.