Community

When Love Comes To Town

Written by Siobhan Moylan

*****Since the writing of this blog (just last week!) Dave has proposed to Jeanette – this will be the first Nextdoor wedding!! We could not be more excited at HQ*****

Nextdoor was created to combat social isolation and loneliness, and to empower neighbours to build stronger communities. Because our members use real names and real addresses, it’s a trusted environment to connect online, and then meet face to face offline. We foster true, meaningful connections every day and this love story is one of our favourites! 

Nextdoor members and fellow Melbournites Jeanette and Dave were not expecting to fall in love when they turned up to a breakfast arranged by their neighbour and fellow Nextdoor user, Delene.

The breakfast, which is now a mainstay Nextdoor member event has been running at The Two Men Restaurant in Berwick and hosted by local resident, 69 year old Delene for almost a year. Delene posted news of the breakfast and Jeanette showed up, as she had been doing over previous months. Delene brought John from the nearby neighbourhood of Narre Warren along as a friend. Delene has an ongoing policy about getting people to mingle and swap seats. That’s when the love connection started. 

The pair both arrived at breakfast in the hope of meeting other locals, having a laugh, and spending a Sunday morning with members of their community,  so what happened next surprised them. 

We caught up with Jennette and asked her what happened; 

You turned up to a Nextdoor breakfast not expecting to find love but what happened? One Sunday morning I was taking a recently separated man friend to Delene’s breakfast club in the hope that he might find some friends or ladies to go out with. I had also been taking him to Rock n’ Roll dance classes in the hope of helping him meet people. Well, Delene encourages us to swap seats so we mingle with others at breakfast so this time I thought well the only person I don’t know is that lovely looking man sitting near Delene, so I introduced myself. 

And then…? He told me his name was Dave and he asked how long I’d been going out with the chap I arrived with as he was in the same walking club so they see each other every week. I said to Dave, “Oh no I’m not with your friend, I’m trying to introduce him to ladies” I laughed. So from there, we just clicked. We chatted for several hours after breakfast club for the following few weeks then started dating and have been in each other’s pockets ever since. That was six months ago! We have just returned from a lovely 10 night cruise where we went snorkelling around the warm islands of the South Pacific and we are now about to leave on a 21 night cruise around NZ then up to more Islands to snorkel. 

This is a sure case of the online word moving off-line! Definitely. We have a lot in common. Dave adores his eight grandchildren, he has three sons. I have 10 grandchildren so far from my seven adult children.  Dave is now learning a lot more Rock n’ Roll dancing as we love to go out. We are mostly homebodies, so we go for long walks around local tracks near both of our homes depending on whose home we are staying at. It’s refreshing to grab a jacket with walking boots and get out in the fresh air during winter. Of course, summer may see more adventure going for long walks with places to stop for snacks along the way. 

Why did you first decide to look into Nextdoor and how did you find out about us? A wonderful neighbour invited me to join Nextdoor via a Nextdoor invite. I had never heard of Nextdoor. Then, someone posted on Nextdoor asking where would be a nice place to meet for a ‘bring a plate’ picnic. I suggested the park opposite Casey Central, as I live nearby and could bring trestle tables and stacking chairs along. We had a lovely group of about 18 people meet then some came back to my place for coffee to help me unpack my car and put the tables and chairs away. I have stayed in touch with some of the members who were there that day.

What’s the best thing in your area about being a part of your community via Nextdoor? Personally I am amazed at the business opportunities people are finding, asking if anyone knows a tradie like a plumber, gardener, house cleaner, electrician etc in the area so we can all support our own local community. I have read of some people needing help, so others like myself who have time can offer assistance; some need advice or different jobs done so local businesses can list their services and I think that’s just great. 

Any advice for those who might be feeling isolated at home? I totally understand how lonely life can be when people are stuck at home. I retired at 48, so I do rely on friends inviting me out or I too would be sitting at home with my beautiful cats. Delene makes a huge effort to encourage people to simply get out of their comfort zone, toss on a jumper and come enjoy a friendly chat, a cuppa or even a light or full breakfast with other friendly faces in a happy place. I’d say it’s worth it. Worked for me!

Dave with his new friends

Jeannette also told Nextdoor that Dave used to be a dog person but that he is being slowly converted. And we can see why!

Dave and his grandson with two of Jennette’s home bred Ragdoll Kittens

The Nextdoor Breakfast Club meets once a month in Berwick, VIC. 

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