I have a friend who recently sold a house on Glenway Avenue on the southern border of East St. Paul. The street is home to both ESP and Winnipeg residents, and the dividing line is clearly visible on garbage and recycling day.
All along the south side of Glenway are City of Winnipeg garbage and recycling containers while one lone East St. Paul garbage tote sat along the north side.
The city and our municipality have worked together to maintain this combined piece of property.
Long time resident Terry tells me his garbage day was yesterday and a quick check on the RM’s website confirms that. Terry also tells me that the dividing line is along the ditch on the north (ESP) side of the road. That means that until he is actually in his driveway, he is in Winnipeg, and even when he looks out his front window, he’s looking at Winnipeg. Terry says that he never really thinks about it and that the only thing about the south side of Glenway that he fondly thinks about was when he used to ride his dirt bike in the fields there before the city crept in.
Further up the street, I meet Merrill, who is washing a car in his driveway. His family has also lived here for 30-plus years. His children went to Emerson School, just across the street, when there were upwards of 500 students in the school. Those kids have since grown up and moved away but their parents have stayed. Merrill likes that because it makes for a quiet neighborhood.
Neither of my new acquaintances ventures into Birds Hill very often. In fact, Merrill figures the only time he heads north is when it’s time to pay his taxes. Terry keeps himself busy working in the city and heading out Grand-Beach-way as often as possible, so he is not really involved in community affairs — although he did offer a satisfied grin when I mentioned that our taxes are cheaper.
There doesn’t appear to be any rivalry — no Hatfields and McCoys. Just two quiet neighborhoods coexisting as one. I was really hoping for some drama.
Ah well, at least the sunset was pretty, even if it did have a hundred garbage bins in the frame.
Cher Hebert is a community correspondent for East St. Paul. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.