Monday, June 19, 2006

Love Thy Neighbor

Or not. *sigh*

Just in case you all missed it, the world fell off it's axis last Friday. Our three cows, who were no doubt coerced by our mule, escaped from their comfy pasture and were roaming the dead end country road in Small Town, Texas. Somehow, the neighbors living up and down the street must've not noticed our animals living there for the past three years, since no one knew where they were supposed to be. Oh, they knew the name of the owners, and apparantly, my phone number as well, since the friendly Sherriff's Department called and left no fewer than 5 messages informing us that the animals had escaped, and judging by the breathlessness of those messages, were running wild up and down the northern part of Texas. Sherriff-ing must not pay what it used to, or we must have one b-o-r-i-n-g little town. I'm no genius, but it seems to me that the easiest way to solve the problem would have been to open the gate to their pasture and let them back in. A little grain + an open gate= animal's happy to follow you to the ends of the earth. Instead, our friendly Sherriff's department, (which, by the way, has it's own "Posse", we are in Texas, remember) decided that it would be much easier to put the animals into a trailer and take them "downtown".

*Snort* Anyone who's herded cattle is probably laughing right along with me at this point....None the less, they did succeed in catching the mule and dragged him off to mule jail, but after much huffing and puffing on the part of our friendly sherriff's department, they were unable to capture the cows, and instead ran them off into...well, the vast wilderness of the rural country neighborhood, I suppose. Upon returning home from a three day stint housesitting for my perfect BIL, we discovered this sorry state of affairs and spent Friday evening rounding up our smart cows who escaped the evil clutches of the law, and most of Saturday bailing our stupid mule out of mule jail, and fixing the fence so that they couldn't put on a repeat performance.

But that is not all! Oh no! That is not all!

There was another message from our landlord, a kind man whom we've been happy to rent from, telling us that he had received a certified letter from the City of Small Town. In my experience, that's never a good thing. So during the great cattle round up of 2006, I repeatedly called his home trying to get ahold of him.

I'm kinda crazy like that. I hate *not knowing*. I can't sleep. It eats me up if I don't *know*.

So I finally got ahold of him and he told me that a neighbor had made a complaint about the condition of the property, specifically: Brush piled in the yard, automobile parts, and trailers parked in front of the residence. The complaint about the trailers gave it away. The "brush" was actually tree limbs from a long overdue "tree hair-cut" that we had trimmed one weekend, and cut up into firewood the next. Wasn't even there by the time the certified letter arrived. The automobile parts consist of the front clip of a 1981 Ford that was brought over by a well intentioned friend to replace parts damaged by a teenage son, 3 "parts" in all. But the trailers! That made me laugh. Yes, we own a 40 foot flatbed trailer. We also have a small utility trailer. It is important to note that we also live in the "semi-country", and so this is not an uncommon thing to see...trailers on one's property.

But, these are no ordinary neighbors! Nope. These are *those* kind of neighbors. Our "Welcome to the neighborhood" party consisted of a Police Cruiser and a polite officer telling us that while our trailer was legally parked, one of our neighbors had been driving the department crazy with daily calls to complain about the trailer. (Wasn't that nice of them?!) The kind officer even had a suggestion, park the trailer on the area next to the driveway; even though that parking arrangement wasn't technically legal according to the ordinances of Small Town, it might help the neighbor feel a little bit better about the situation and make them stop calling.

Apparantly, that didn't work, and the squeaky wheel DOES get the grease.

My Hubster is a patient man. But once his patience are used up, there is no reserve. Mom of All Trades Street was littered with no less than two trailers and four vehicles by Satruday afternoon. All legally parked, and stratigically placed so that all traffic must slow down and slolom carefully through, one car at a time. I hid the poster board and markers so that Hubster couldn't carry out the second part of his diabolical plan. B *can* read now, and I don't have any desire to be defining *those* words for my six and seven year old any time soon. When Hubster goes to work, I'll carry out the plan devised by my dad, and simply write the words: "BITE ME" in shoe polish on the windows. Why should I let him have all the fun?


Heather said...

Can I come over and help?? I'll moon em for you! (that'll fix em!)

Nettie said...

What an adventurous life you lead! It almost sounds like a movie. I can just imagine the background music they would play the footage of the posse chased the cattle, speeded up like those old time comedies.

Maine Mom said...

Take pictures...must see pictures of this "take that you #@^%*" scene :-)
I'm sorry you have neighbors like that.

Stephanie said...

Are you writing all of these "adventures" down or printing out your blog so that some day you can look back at your neighbors and smirk because they are "those" type of people and you aren't?

Did you know that when you mouth the word "vacuum" to people, it looks like you are telling them a nasty little phrase. My dd wonders why I go around in the car saying "vacuum". It makes me feel better.