Being great neighbours means not just knowing names and making small talk, but the relationship actually goes a step further when we start working together.

One of my best neighbours ever was a partner in building a deck. I planned to build a deck, bought a book from Home Depot, and got in way over my head. The book seemed to assume perfect conditions, a new house with perfect corners, and not my century home with wonky ones.

My neighbour would wander over, find me scratching my head, and give advice, tools, and a helping hand. He wasn’t just helping me, he became my partner, working alongside me.

There was something in it for him – he was a shift worker bored during the daytime, and loved building things. There was something in it for me – a new deck, and new skills.

It wasn’t planned, it just happened because we knew each other’s names, spent time outside and he was available.

Question: When have you unexpectedly partnered with someone for a project?

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