My Neighbor, a Zebra

by Clarissa

Living in a town named Thousand Oaks seems a little strange; even more if you consider that the town is located in the Rabbit Valley… but to have a zebra as a neighbor sounds like I live in a fairy tale…

About five weeks ago, when Doc and I were not living in our 1000 Querce mansion, we came to admire our property, its new hardwood flooring, and the view over the Rabbit Valley.

“Quick quick, come over” yells Doc from the corner room that–obviously–will become the office “I saw a zebra there, at that window”
“A zebra?” I reply running over with a puzzled face
“Yes yes yes, a zebra, right there in the house in front of our patio”

I run to the corner room and start staring at the window that Doc points to me, but I can see no zebra.
“I swear on whatever you want that there was a zebra showing from that window”

To be honest, looking around, I notice something that reminds a sort of a zebra: a black and white umbrella by the main entrance.

“Hmmm must be someone who is a Juve supporter” I burst with joy

[I need to clarify this point for my friends who are not Italian and don’t know about Juve and soccer. Juve or Juventus is the soccer football club of my hometown, Torino or Turin. The mascotte of Juve is a zebra, and the soccer players wear a black-and-white striped shirt during soccer matches. In my family, all members root for Juve, and so am I]

“Can you believe it!!! A Juve supporter HERE in 1000 Querce!!! Oh my… I am so happy… I can’t believe that I have FOUND A JUVE SUPPORTER right here in-the-middle-of-no-where… I mean, chances are like winning the lottery without the benefit of the $$$!!! Can you imagine if Juve ends up being the first in the A league at the end of the year! The neighbor and I are going to have a blast celebrating its victory!!! WOW… so nice!!!!”

Doc stares at me with a concerned look. I bet he is already thinking of what I can do if Juve wins the A league next Spring. He is not into soccer that much, only during the Soccer World Cup, basically once every four years.

We keep staring the window in silence. We’re focused on the appearance of the zebra that is already becoming a sort of Loch Ness monster in the Rabbit Valley. Then, when I was about to give up…

“Good grief!!! THAT was indeed a zebra” I say with a dose of surprise “I saw it… It looked like one of those rugs made with the skin of the animal, and clearly that was a zebra…”

So, from that day on, we became aware of living next to a zebra, and every morning when I am in the kitchen setting up breakfast, and I watch out of my window, my first greeting of the day is “Hi Zebra, how are you today?”

PS: This is the driving plate of a car I saw parked in Boston, MA,  in 2000