When I was in college, a friend and I drove down to DC to visit a friend who was working there that summer. On the way home, we saw a sigh that said JHTYG 90 (for clarity sake, JHTYG is a town that I made up because I didn’t want to use the real town name. I think 90 might be the correct amount of miles away). JHTYG was the town where one of our friends lived. It was also 90 miles opposite the direction we were headed. So of course we went to drop by… I think it was the only time I ever dropped in on someone without their prior knowledge. 1985.

I do not like the drop in. With the exception of one of my best friends dropping in to see me as a surprise because they were passing through NYC, I’m not a big fan. We have a neighbor who sometimes lets her dog out of her apartment- the dog then sits outside of our place and barks. Theoretically, the neighbor wants company…my husband will go out and talk for a few minutes, but I pretend I can’t hear the 30 pound dog barking…If I am lucky enough to be home alone, I’m staying that way… So unless you are M, G or A, (I would also allow any of the S’s, and M and C but M and C are less likely to drop in than I am) please call before coming by…

But that’s me.

What do you think about the drop in visitor? Are you excited for the company? Are you mortified that your house isn’t “clean”? Do you gleefully open a bottle of wine or put up a K cup of coffee, or do you consider hiding when the doorbell rings? Is not answering the door for an unexpected visit the main reason that people get those special camera doorbells?

In a post pandemic world (sorry to inform those of you clinging to masks and self tests case numbers, but we are how in the AC era) is there even such a thing as a drop in visitor? Is our busy world too jam packed with TO DO’s that drop in’s are a TO DON’T ? Booty calls are prearranged on Tinder. My daughters playdates were scheduled months in advance because you know how crazy the life of a three year old is…

Will people ever really go back to the world of come on knock on my door, we’ve been waiting for you. Did we ever want to be there in the first place?

Past: Did you like the drop in?

Present: Do you answer the door for an unexpected visitor?

Future: Are you going to drop in on someone you know?

Discuss

85 thoughts on “Drop In

    1. NYC took down all the subway signs about masks. As we still have posters from Cats which closed in 2000…I’m feeling the fat lady sang…. On another note, I was at an exhibit the other day where I saw something about Mary Pickford playing Pollyanna when she was 27…so anything does go

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  1. It depends, I guess. A drop in from out of town or far away… I’d rather know ahead of time so I can make myself be available. I used to care about tidy house etc but I gave up…But I’d be sad to miss them if I didn’t know but am up to my eyeballs in something or on the way to some rink…

    Drop in my a neighbor is a bit different. I tend to go see what they want at the door unless I’m already outside…usually the chats are short(ish).

    I’m equally comfortable to the gnore a doorbell. Depends on my state of mind.

    These days with smartphones, no reason why someone can’t send a quick text and say “I’m 30 min away, you around for a coffee?” or something like that.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Agreed. Tech is so easy you don’t really need to drop by unannounced. I have no problem with chatting with someone I run into…but don’t come a knocking…

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  2. I’ve dropped by my neighbors doors when recently I had a Costco cheesecake delivered to my door that wasn’t mine…but routinely no, I don’t just stop by anywhere. I see no reason to and I think most people would find it discourteous and an interruption.

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  3. It has always made me feel uncomfortable. I will even arrive at my mums and then ring her to see if it is ok to drop in while I’m outside in the car. No surprises is how we like it in our family. My husband and his family are the exact opposite.

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    1. My father in law dropped in once. I made it clear that his presence in my apartment, when my daughter was napping and it was only time I had to myself was not wanted

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  4. I saw a comedy sketch about this question and how the times have changed. It was hilarious because it was so true. Back when I was little my parent’s always had the coffee on for people that would drop in. Now we quick shut off the lights and get down on the floor so they don’t see us if we hear a knock or the doorbell.
    We don’t quite do that but yes I would rather people call first. Though if its a close friend I don’t want them to ever think that they can’t stop by suddenly if they need to.

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    1. When I was growing up there was an unexpected doorbell ring at least once. Week…when I was really little the neighbor, Dolores (I still remember) always dropped by

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  5. No, I don’t like unannounced visitors at this stage in my life. I didn’t mind them when I was younger. And in my youth, my first husband and I traveled across country and we, as young hippies, popped in on friends all the time. That was what everyone did in the late 60’s and early 70’s. But now being in my 70’s I think dropping by unexpectedly is thoughtless. Today everyone carries a cell phone at all times, so there’s no excuse for not calling ahead, stating they are in the neighborhood and asking if you are available. That gives you time to clean up or get dressed. Lol OR to say you are busy.
    However, in this delicate health climate, with new variants popping up everywhere it’s not only rude to show up unannounced, it’s dangerous. And yes, Covid numbers are on the rise again . So much so that both my sons, in Florida and in Georgia got Covid last month. One had a mild case, the other, in Florida was seriously ill. AND both wear masks whenever they leave their homes. The difference is now so many other people are not masked. So…Guess what, unmasked people got them sick even though my sons were vaccinated and masked. So nope, there is no such thing as post pandemic. My doctor still doesn’t allow anyone but patients inside and every one is masked. So until my doctor says it’s ok to unmask I’ll stay masked and stay far from anyone bare faced.

    Since I’m high risk due to cancer and chemo, I am not afraid to tell people they can’t come in. However, even if I were healthy I like to be prepared for a visit. Perhaps it’s being a senior citizen. It didn’t bother me until I was in my 60’s. I’m not sure why it does now. But it does.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Apparently there’s a study showing boosted people get Covid more than non boosted…but I’m sure there’s a study to the contrary. Covid isn’t going anywhere, but the restrictions are pretty much over. Even here, even though we are supposed to be masked on mass transit, I rarely see anyone with a mask on

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I am not a fan of the drop in. We don’t have them. My parents did when I was growing up. I found it annoying then, too. We made the mistake of dropping in on our daughter in college. We showed up at a college swim meet in Utah from CA. My husband thought it would be fun to surprise her. Our daughter did not feel the same. She cancelled plans she had to hang out with us. She didn’t have to. We were perfectly capable of entertaining ourselves, but she felt obligated. Worst thing we did.

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    1. That’s my problem with it…how do you know you’re not interrupting someone, and it doesn’t matter if they’re busy or not. There are times I just want to chill…

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      1. When I was at an awkward age, neighbors popped in to say hi to mom and dad. I remember I had my hair in rag curls and was wearing old shorts and a t-shirt. I was in the pantry. I decided to stay in the pantry until the neighbors left. I thought it would be a few minutes, but they sat down to have coffee and chatted for over an hour! I was hiding the entire time.

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  7. I’m with you about …all of a sudden show ups just to sit a spell…sure rubs me wrong…but.. what’s with your one size fits all declaration that the pandemic has become… just oh so passé…”clinging to mask and self test.” A language parse so dismissive… and swimming in such backwater snark…that it just begs-dares for a flood of new variants to float that Big Apple to a higher ground of current understanding.

    The consequences of this ongoing and still evolving pandemic will be knocking on our doors, often and unexpectedly, for at least the next two decades.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Cases are in the rise here. Less people are wearing masks than ever. I think it’s dawned on people that, like I said in June 2020, it’s not going away. Covid is forever. We’re learning to live with it in our back pocket. That’s why I call it AC…it’s learning how to adjust to our lives with this unwanted but stalking visitor

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  8. I don’t believe I’d do it to someone now that we have cellphones. However, some people like a drop in visitor; I have noticed that when people become older, they appreciate a drop in guest. I think it depends on who’s dropping in and who’s being dropped in on. 😂

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I have a ring doorbell so I can see who is at my door. I actually have it pre recorded when you ring the doorbell to say “leave my package at the door and have a nice day.” That freaks people out who aren’t the Amazon or UPS guy. Lol So I don’t answer my door if I don’t know who the person is.

      Liked by 3 people

  9. I do like company, but the older I get the less I like unexpected visitors. I’m just becoming a lot less social. At least give me a call even if you’re 10 minutes away. If I don’t answer, don’t come. Weekends I am more flexible, though. We have a few friends that might show up without warning because usually someone is outside and willing to visit. If they don’t see signs of life outside, they’ll often not stop by. As for someone traveling through the state, I do want to see you, but please give me a couple hours to tidy up if you know that you are going to stop by. Better yet, let me know in advance and I’ll have food for you. I agree that with today’s technology, it’s USUALLY possible to give advance notice and if you DON’T it might be because you think you might not be welcome.

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  10. I am a drop in as down in lower Alabama (LA) with the family, it was ok. In Florida, it is better to call. I like people calling but at the same time it is nice they drop in and check on things from time to time. In the past, it was always acceptable as we also left our door unlocked way back then. No longer.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. We once had a somewhat interesting neighbor, retired from the garment district, in the area. She was elderly and lived with her son, in his 40’s. He was a little different. One time, when we were new in the area-I knocked on the door to say hi and she came around the corner of the house and asked me, ‘what are you doing here?’ I was trying to be friendly but I never made that mistake twice. Just a nod to her walking the dog. He he.

        Liked by 1 person

  11. That time, I learned it is easier to invite a neighbor to have a cup of coffee and a chat away from their home and possible sources of uncomfortableness, etc. By the way, our neighbors in the mountains never intruded by letting themselves in the house. That would have breached our privacy and common sense ruled as far as I know. Although I could tell a few tales about summer visitors from the city. He he.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I grew up in a very small town. Drop in was the norm. I would feel weird now dropping in on someone unannounced.
    I don’t answer the door when someone knocks. I assume it is a solicitor. If someone I know is there they can text me to tell me.
    I prefer people leave gifts like alcohol and donuts on my front porch and run away

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  13. No drop ins. I wouldn’t do it to anyone else and wouldn’t want them to do it to me. As was said, with almost everybody having a cellphone now, no reason for not giving a heads up. And, if you do happen to drop in, don’t expect anything to eat or drink because I don’t keep liquor or snacks around the house and don’t cook a big enough meal to support extras.

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  14. Oh, I would not do well with a drop in guest. That would make me very unhappy. And I would definitely never do that to someone else. But I’m so bad that I even avoid getting stuck chitchatting with my next door neighbors. Like if we both pulled in, I would hang back until they get in their house. LOL

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  15. I like it when people feel free to drop in on me, and I would always answer the door. That said, I’d rather know they are coming so I could look forward to their visit. Neighbors are in a different category. They are always near and always welcome.

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  16. I look forward to dropping by unannounced that I am both an “M” and an “S” 😉 but seriously, a big fat NO! Call First ya know, the exception honestly is family or neighbors that don’t have my number.

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  17. I think in most parts of this country the drop in just isn’t done anymore. As many mentioned – we have cell phones. How hard is it to call or text to see if dropping by is okay? The last drop-in was one neighbor to tell us another neighbor (next door to us) just died. The time before that was an acquaintance who stopped by because he was “in the neighborhood.” It was weird, and he just wanted to push his Trumpist conspiracies. Ugh.

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  18. I have never liked drop in visitors, I also don’t like the phone call that announces ‘oh good your are in, I will around in half an hour’ worst still is that call then it’s two hours later when they do turn up. I like at least a couple of days notice and a time before a visit. I don’t answer the door if I am not expecting anyone.

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  19. I am an introvert so it makes my dislike of drop ins intense. People have tried to tell me this is a character flaw. My in laws liked to do the drop in.
    I am glad to find out that many others are not a fan of the drop in.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. I found this very interesting. I hope it’s ok that I’m writing a longer response on my blog, and added a link to this post. I have a different view of the drop in. I think drop ins are great and need to make a comeback! 😊

    Liked by 2 people

  21. Saw this on a sign by a front door of a friend (she knew we were coming!). Not exactly the “drop in” topic, but it’s funny anyway.
    No Soliciitng
    We are too broke to buy anything
    We know who we are voting for
    We have found Jesus
    So unless you have a package from Amazon, please do away!

    I believe the days of the drop ins are probably gone. Our lives are too structured now to be able to pivot for an unscheduled guest!

    Liked by 3 people

  22. My father was a minister when we lived in a small town, so not only did people feel free to drop in, but the didn’t always even knock before coming through the door. (Our house was a parsonage, meaning it was owned by the church, and some people took that very literally.) So I grew up with dropping in, but I don’t do it myself. I will knock at a door unannounced, but only to drop something off, I don’t expect an invitation to come in and will decline if it’s offered. For now, I prefer to invite people to my house or have them invite me. The one exception is when we’re sitting on our front porch and a neighbor we knows walks by. Then we’ll say, “Come join us!” We actually had some nice encounters that way.

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  23. I’ve never considered not opening the door to a knock/doorbell. If I was alone and it was after midnight, I’d check the spyglass/call through the door first. My neighbour & I drop in on one another all the time. I drop in on my sister who lives locally, and did so with friends when they were more local. But I wouldn’t drop in to those distant from me without dropping a text first. But I’m comfortable with spontaneity and always have been, and was brought up in a culture of welcoming visitors and strangers.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s a horses for courses thing, Himself is very much not for spontaneity either…

        What I feel is important is to ensure that you don’t drop in on someone’s who’s not of the same mindset as you. My neighbour only drops in when I’m home alone, and my sister prefers me dropping in on her. That way everyone’s happy.

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  24. DO NOT DROP IN on me! My life is way too structured for such Tom foolery lbvs

    It’s not even because my house isn’t in order or whatever…I just think if you’re an adult who made an intentional plan to travel, then you could’ve thought about if my home was on the way there or back, so we could have a proper sit down situation.

    Liked by 2 people

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