FIDDELANGE – After years of muted hostility between them that has ranged from “a tense nothingness” to “nearly perceptible dislike,” an expat and his Luxembourgish neighbor have signed a peace agreement.
Cole Sanderson, 31, and Robert Kremer, 72, have been at odds since Sanderson moved to Luxembourg – and a house in the neighborhood – more than three years ago. Observers say the tension has been felt from Sanderson’s first day on the street when he partially blocked Kremer’s driveway with a moving van.
Recent skirmishes include Sanderon’s attempt in English to ask Kremer to not use his leaf blower so early on Sunday mornings, Kremer’s demand in Luxembourgish that Sanderson put back his garbage bin in a more timely manner, and one unpleasant exchange in broken French when Sanderson’s cat Perkins escaped and defecated on Kremer’s doorstep.
“This agreement calls for mutual tolerance and puts an end to the nearly open conflict that has ravaged rue Michel Finkelmort for 37 months and 13 days,” says Lucianne Dorque, a French neighbor and preschool teacher who brokered the deal. “Both parties agree to immediately stop regarding the other as a painful skin rash that has appeared during the night, and more like a stray but seemingly non-rabid dog that runs up to you during a walk.”
Some neighbors had called for other conditions, including for Sanderson to compliment Kremer on his garden at least once a year, and for Kremer to learn once and for all from which country Sanderson comes. However, experts in diplomacy warned that such demands could throttle the deal, so they were discarded.