Not Such Great Neighbours

The kids next door (and they’re not that young) sit outside with their snacks and sweets, and when they’ve finished, they tip them over the wall into Mum’s garden. I don’t think they have anything against her; they are just too lazy to walk to the bin.

Usually it’s over the low wall at the front, the rubbish being hidden behind the bushes, but today I looked down a very narrow space between our shed and the tall fence between us (it’s taller than we are); there was rubbish down there as well. Crisp and sweet packets, Lucozade bottles, lager cans, beer bottle caps, yoghurt pots, cigarette packets, fag ends… Mum says the father stands out there and smokes, but I assume the boys smoke too, and they’re surely the ones doing that. (If our shed ever burns down, I’ll know who to blame).

I used an edger (being the longest and thinnest of our garden tools) to scrape about half of the rubbish out (I couldn’t reach the stuff at the far end, but I might manage that later). It’s a very narrow area and the edger made quite a racket against the fence, but I can’t say I was sorry. It doesn’t sound like a particularly arduous exercise, but my shoulder froze up afterwards. The edger’s blade was on its side as the space was so narrow — try scraping sweetie papers and cigarette butts with that.

It might have been them who disposed of a soft toy rat in our garden (we washed it and gave it sanctuary); they also managed to lose a jacket over the wall, and when Mum handed it back, their puzzled mother said it was a recent purchase and she’d been wondering where it was.

It’s depressing.

Last night I saw part of a mechanics or car programme on TV; they had several old cars and were catapulting them off a cliff and watching them smash. The presenters were enjoying it hugely, but I couldn’t watch… it was too sad.

I still miss Sharky and can’t really talk about him, even jokingly. I said to Mum that Samson is Octopussy, my eight cat, and Delilah is my ninth cat — which meant that Sharky was 007. I opened my mouth to say that, and then I couldn’t, so I just shut up.

Saw the Jane Eyre drama (or the first part of it) on TV last night… I’ve never seen it all the way through, and still haven’t, unless I manage to catch the rest of it (and I’m not sure when it will be screened, or if I’ve already missed it). There’s a bit in the story where some supercilious lady put her foot in just about every cowpat around by saying that (1) poor, weak and disadvantaged people had ‘bad blood’ and shouldn’t be in the population, and (2) children didn’t have feelings any more than ‘that dog over there’ (pointing at her host’s pride and joy). I liked the way the dog stared back in blank astonishment while his owner’s face went stony.

All of this blog post is because there are still people out there who really believe others don’t have feelings, or don’t care that they have feelings, or haven’t considered that they have feelings. Feeling a bit stony myself.

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14 responses

  1. Can’t you go round and politely ask your neighbours not to throw things over the fence? It might be case that they’re doing it because they think you don’t care or haven’t noticed.

  2. The world is becoming more and more self-centered.

  3. My mum has similar problems with her neighbours. It might be worth talking to the parents – but be prepared that they might be more angry at you for telling them about it, than their kids for doing it.

    😦

  4. Mum politely mentioned it to the mother a while back; possibly at the time she handed the jacket back. It made no difference and the boys continued to throw their rubbish across. I’m sorry your mother is going through the same thing, Pacian. 😦

    At my house I found that people threw soda cans, fag ends etc into my garden in passing, but even then I never had that amount of trouble, probably because both my neighbbours were nice older ladies without children.

    It’s different now; one of the ladies died and there’s a young mother in her house with a little boy; there’s a new baby in my own house (they had it shortly after moving in), so I wonder if those families talk to each other.

  5. We have problems with our new neighbours. They are a young couple in their early 20s who come home drunk shouting and slamming doors, they have blazing arguments with all the windows open. And the language the girl uses is enough to make a trooper blush.

  6. I hope they don’t do that just as you’re getting off to sleep, though I bet it’s disturbing at any time. Sounds as though they should stay away from the bars if it has that kind of effect on them.

  7. I hope they’ll grow up…I can’t imagine letting kids do that. We have a lady down the block who takes in foster kids and some of them like to litter or “borrow” things and not return them. She’s quite avid at keeping after them, but there is only so much you can do. After the kids kept scattering cigarette butts all over our car park we left out a can for cigarette butts. They use it. Not perfect, but it’s a start…
    How about just throwing it back over the fenceinto their yard? 🙂

  8. You sound down… I can understand that things get on top us some days and other areas are high-lighted. I can’t stand watching the youth of today do the things they do with little or no regard for anyone else. (I know that staement makes me sound like a bitter twisted old(er) woman!)
    Sorry to hear about your sadness for your loss, it takes time and then it will only become easier to talk of lost loves… it won’t make it any easier accepting.
    I hope tomorrow is a good day for you. :o)

  9. Sorry to hear about your slovenly neighbors. I had neighbors like that a few residences ago and I just collected up all of the trash and left the bag of rubbish on their doorstep. Soon after I noticed less trash in my yard. (That is until thier sons had a party when their parents went away and I found on of their friends & several bottles in my yard. I walked out with a trash bag and a cup of black coffee and woke the very hungover youth. Now I am wondering when I got old enough to call them youth(s).)

  10. Our bedroom is at the front of the house and furthest away from the noise, but my son finds it a problem. He works in a pub, so doesn’t get home until quite late, then he has to get up for college in the morning. That’s the ironic aspect of the situation – my son is about 5 years younger than this couple, so it’s not just a case of me being a killjoy. I have been tempted to go round and ask them to keep it down, but they don’t sound like the sort of people who would be open to reason. Fingers crossed they’ll either grow up or move away.

  11. I know what you mean, Daffy; I felt like a bitter old woman myself when I was saying “my neighbours used not to have children, and my place was relatively tidy back then!” Thing is, it’s true. It was mostly passing children who threw stuff in, and it wasn’t like having them living next door all the time.

    What’s with this bitter old woman stereotype anyway; I’m sure any woman is fine till other people came along and do their thing…

    A good thought, Karin, and I’m glad it worked for you. Especially important in these days when bin space is limited. Chucking it back over could develop into a game of ping pong, but with some rowdier families I suppose a carefully-placed bag of rubbish could be thrown back as well. Depends on who finds it first – the grown-up or the non-grown-up! I think the parents next door would be all right, but I’m not sure about their kids.

  12. Hi Kate, that’s the worrying thing; people (with or without their kids) can make life not worth living, and one hesitates to take it up with them in case it makes things worse. That’s human nature, I suppose; some will play along and be reasonable, but others won’t care. I hope for you that they do move away, and soon.

  13. I always get upset when others doing ‘wrongly’ can put us in the wrong by implying we’re the ones with the problem because we don’t just let them do as they will. I like Karin’s suggestion — maybe knock on the door and hand the Mom the bag of trash and tell her that you did it “this time”, but next time you will expect her or her kids to clean up the problem. Grrrrr! I’ll come tell her if you like!

    I don’t like the senseless destruction of things, either. I don’t know why that stuff appeals even to the lowest common denominator.

    Hugs for Sharky and that deep-rooted sadness. I know that feeling.

    Hugs for YOU!

    huggingly,
    Shu

  14. If more rubbish comes over (as proof that they haven’t already stopped of their own volition), I will take that rubbish over… though they’re Mum’s neighbours, so really I would let her decide. She’s on a much more sociable footing with all the neighbours than I am, though we could play ‘good cop, bad cop’. Guess who would be the bad cop. 😀

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