Growing up I had a limited amount of neighborhood kids to play with. When I was really little there was a family across the street with daughters about 5 years older than I was. They were usually kimd enough to let me come over and jump on the trampoline, but that was about it.
A bit later there was a family who lived behind us with kids about 5 years younger than I was. We played for a few years, but before too long I got old enough to babysit them, and I wasn't nearly as fun when I was in charge.
Today, I watched my children outside, in our driveway. Kids from 3 different families were there. Riding bikes up and down the sidewalk. Throwing leaves around. Pretending to go camping in the driveway. I started thinking about it and realized how lucky my children are. There are children their age up and down our street. They walk home from school together. (Which the mothers like, safety in numbers and all.) They ride bikes together and create pretend campfires. They are loud and obnoxious and have a glorious time together. They would rather be outside than in. Which, I think is a rarity. And I don't think I would have it any other way.