Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Crazy Backyard Neighbor. Do YOU have one?

As a little girl I would daydream about building a house on the family farm. I had a spot all picked out. It was near the back fence-row on the main field, right under the massive tree and beside the trail that leads to the top of the property. I would drive the little stick shift Toyota out to that spot and pretend I was pulling into my drive.

I was never much for inside play, so I mostly daydreamed about the yard that I would have, the wrap around porch, the goats, the children, and yes, the clothes line. I blame my grandmother for that last one. I always loved watching her hang her clothes on the clothes line. I told myself that I would one day have one JUST LIKE HER.

Well, as you already know, I don't live on the family farm, or have a goat, or even a clothes line. I live 2 hrs away from the farm, in another city, right smack dab in the middle of downtown. But you know what? I love it! We have just enough house, and just enough land. We have 2 wonderfully crazy children and beautiful plans. We even have some pretty cool neighbors with wonderfully crazy children and beautiful plans!

However, we do have this one neighbor. Does everyone have that ONE neighbor? You know. The ONE neighbor that is, as 20/20 says, the neighbor from HELL.  Don't answer that. I know you probably don't so don't say that you don't and make me feel even more awful than I already feel. OK!

Anyway, to not go into too much detail, this neighbor's fence backs up to our property and he enjoys climbing over the fence to yell at us about any and everything. Yes, you read that correct. The man puts a ladder on his side of the fence, then a ladder on our side of the fence, and climbs over the fence to stand in our faces to YELL at us.  You see, the way the town in laid out, there are alley ways that run behind the houses. It was an alley that was used a LONG LONG LONG time ago. Now it is just grass and LOOKS just like it is our yard, especially with his fence up. So even though it looks like he has climbed the fence and is standing in our yard, he is actually standing on city property. Out yard starts 10 feet from his fence.

The problem? The man is OCD. And I do mean that FOR REAL. He has some mental health issues, I just know it. Yes, this is the man that climbed over the fence and cut down the 2 evergreens that were "in city property" and started yelling at us when we said "well, then let the city cut them down."  Have you all watched the Crazy Ruhbarb lady video?  Here it is if you haven't.

The man yells at us like this. But we don;t provoke him like these people do. Roger and I flip into our pastor/chaplain mode and start counseling the guy, trying to get him to calm down.

But last night got WAY OUT OF HAND. The man would NOT calm down and at one point said, "you know what I ought to do? I ought to go in my house and get my gun." That is when I picked up the phone and called for back up. I guess maybe I should have called 911, I don't know, but I called a lawyer friend.I wanted a witness, a legal witness, and I really didn't know what the police would be able to do, the man was standing on "city property".

Today Roger and I are going fence shopping. We sat up last night looking at options and prices, and the deed to our property. I want a fence. The man is crazy. CRAZY. He sits outside looking through the fence, listening to the kids and I, watching us. And when he finds something to get pissed about, like me having trimmed a tree and left the tree trimmings on the "city property" because I had to leave to take my child to gymnastics, and had planned on getting to the limbs later in the week, he will climb over the fence and threaten violence on my family while throwing limbs at us. 

So yes, I am done.  And yes, we will take out a loan to get a fence.  And yes, the next time this happens Roger and I have already promised each other that we will walk in the house and call the police. No more trying to talk to the man. He clearly IS insane, needs mental health help, and is a danger to us. 

It is just so sad that this is happening.  Last night I had a crying fit until about 1am. "Why me God? Why us?" YEs, I had one of those kinds of fits. Yes, pastors and their spouses have THOSE kinds of fits too.  I've just been through a LOT emotionally these past 2 years. I really still haven't gotten over the family tragedy and the after affects of it that are rippling through so many, I'm getting ready to start an emotionally rough internship, and the kids are, well, kids, and emotionally and physically exhausting.

As I was sitting on the front porch typing this blog, one of our neighbors walked by. An elderly couple out for a morning stroll. The old man yelled out "well there's our friend, still sitting on the front porch! The only thing that would make that better is if you had a Highball to drink. But I guess it's too early for that. Maybe a martini or a rum and coke!"    You see, that is what I LOVE about living downtown. I love people, and I love the random encounters that you have when you live downtown and sit on your front porch.   I have to remind myself of that when I have a crazy backyard neighbor who likes to scale the fence, throw Fbombs at us, and threaten to get his gun. 

The good thing is that we do live within walking distance of the police department!

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