INVITING A NEIGHBOR FOR TEA
Having a neighbor over for tea can be a great way to connect with your neighbor and to be a good neighbor. If you run into a neighbor and are looking for a good way to break the ice, then why not offer to have them over for a beverage. If you both have children, you can easily make your tea visit a play date with child activities as well. Set up some toys on a mat and let the children run wild while you and your new neighbor enjoy some friendly conversation.
New Neighbor Conversation Starters
When initiating conversation for a first visit with a new friend sometimes the words will flow easier than other times. Sometimes people connect right away and you find things to talk about from Day One. Other times you may be looking at ways to break the ice and good conversation starters.
If you are in the latter category with your new neighbor, then stick to some of the basic questions - where did they move from, why did they move, what do they think of the street and the new town, etc. Of course, these questions can get quite dull and, if the conversation simply isn't moving, you can try discussing things in the area that you enjoy doing and that your neighbor may be interested in as well.
For example, talk about the various parks and activities for kids if you and your neighbor both have children. Or, discuss the different recreational activities that you like to do, such as the yoga clinic or the gym down the road. You can give your neighbors the low down on all the places in the area, such as the restaurants, the schools, the bars, etc. Furthermore, you may find that your neighbor is actually involved in the same activities as you and looking for a good place in the area to start up again.
The Best Time for Tea
There is no standard time to have tea. However, usually a good time to visit is after 9am and after 2pm. That way you are not interfering with the morning routine or the lunch time routine. Many young children and even some adults will have a snooze around midday after lunch. 9am is a good time as it is usually a couple of hours after breakfast but a few hours before lunch. 2 or 3pm also work as you may be feeling a little puckish for a snack before dinner but a cup of tea with some biscuits are not going to totally spoil your appetite for your 6pm dinner.
Of course, drinking tea is not necessary when it comes to having a neighbor over. You may find that your neighbor does not like tea. It may be too hot for tea. Offer water, pop, orange juice, wine - anything. Having a drink in hand can make the conversation flow easier and give you something to do in between talking and listening.
If the conversation doesn't seem to flow and you and your neighbor find that you don't have a lot in common, the good thing about inviting a neighbor for tea is that the date generally only lasts about an hour. After that, you are free to go. You can feel good knowing you did a nice thing and made your neighbor feel welcome even if it did not turn into an automatic friendship. Furthermore, you will find that it is much more pleasant when you see your neighbor on the street or around town knowing a little bit about her situation.