Why I Moved To The Country

22 Oct


I always felt a little too close to our neighbors when we lived in town.  One day I thought their house was on fire and peered over the fence to see them chain smoking on the back deck.

They also enjoyed burning all their trash in their fireplace.  The prevailing winds sent this eye-watering haze into our yard.

I approached them and they said they were just burning caterpillars.  That was a lot of caterpillars.  Finally I called the city.  The city made them buy trash pick up, which they hadn’t had since 1952.   Even though they now owned a snazzy blue plastic trash can, they still burned trash in their fireplace.  They tried to do it when we wouldn’t notice.  Like when it was 90 degrees and the kids were out in the wading pool.

I went over to their house, braving the toxic cloud and asked if they could please stop.  Mr. Neighbor came to the door eating a plate of spaghetti, his brow sweaty and  furrowed.    Silently he stared me down.  His wife came up behind him and said they were just burning old checks.  You know how important it is to burn those.

This went on for 16 years.  Though they got more stealthy and sometimes tried to burn it after 9 pm.

I should add that our houses were mere feet apart, separated by a geriatric fence that had been built in 1970 something.  We shared a small ice cube tray on top of the fence where they put peanuts for the squirrels.

They also had a large RV.  Think the largest RV you have ever seen- the size of a small bus.  They had a small driveway so they parked the RV on the road in front of our house.  The tall RV came just in front of our dining room window and we looked at it instead of our territorial view of other neighbors’ yards.

They parked it there for months at a time.  When they moved it,  their friends with RVs would come visit and camp out on the parking strip in front of our house.  They were all retired so they were there all the time.  They had a large slide out that stuck out into the road so we couldn’t see to back out of our driveway.  They played loud country music and had a poodle who barked incessantly.

When they ate dinner, we were usually eating dinner.  Our windows lined up so we had to watch them and their little poodle eat dinner and listen to country music.  They were entirely oblivious to being mere feet way from our kitchen and dining room windows and the fact that they were practically camping in our yard. They never introduced themselves, waved or acknowledged that we existed.

They stayed for weeks.

Meanwhile the neighbors, who had the standard juniper, rhodie and fir landscape, had a tree service come every few weeks and spray every bush and shrub in the yard with pesticides.  Because our yards were so close, spraying their trees meant half of our yard, including my veggie garden and lawn furniture got doused with spray.

So that was one motivation to move back to the country.  People warned me that in the country, people burn their trash and farmers spray their fields.  I said, it couldn’t possibly be any worse.


8 Responses to “Why I Moved To The Country”

  1. Carol Weinstock October 22, 2013 at 11:08 pm #

    What do I think? I think you are so right…how are people so oblivious? I mean how do you not notice that you are practically living on someone else’s property? I would have felt so uncomfortable even staying in front of the house let alone hanging over it. We really have become so self-absorbed. You are so funny. Geriatric fence.

    • A New Path October 22, 2013 at 11:19 pm #

      Thanks, Carol. I want to live in a Mayberry neighborhood but I keep ending up in the Twilight Zone.

  2. Nathalia Lindvall October 22, 2013 at 11:44 pm #

    I love, love and love this. My boyfriend and I are moving down to his 15000 acres family farm in the middle of nowhere next week and I needed to rad a post like this! Also love that you’re into horses, I plan to get myself one (haven’t had one in years) now when I will live in the country and can have one!

    • A New Path October 23, 2013 at 9:22 am #

      Good luck with your move! And that is so exciting that you can get a horse. That is a reason I wanted to move back to the country, too. Thank you for stopping by and reading.

  3. The Dancing Rider October 23, 2013 at 6:00 am #

    Yikes, what a horror story of sorts. Love the photo. Laughed at the almost non-existent fence…..We are very lucky here in the suburbs. Our neighbors are good, quiet, and don’t do anything bizarre! We do get everyone else’s leaves – that’s about the only bad thing!

    • A New Path October 23, 2013 at 9:25 am #

      Glad you have a nice neighborhood! I hope when we downsize and move back to town someday that we have good neighbors. I think, when moving, checking out the neighborhood is a wise thing. We were young and foolish when we bought that past house.

  4. Shannon October 27, 2013 at 7:18 am #

    Good fences make good neighbors. Lots of acreage does, too. 😉

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