Quote of the day...er...week...umm...hey, look, a quote!!

"...besides love, independence of thought is the greatest gift an adult can give a child." - Bryce Courtenay, The Power of One

For old quotes, look here.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Good Fences...

...need to be better fences.

Yesterday was rough, but it had some bright spots. Thank you. You know who you are.

This morning started with promise, but went rapidly down hill. I chanced to look outside and noticed something amiss.

See the dirt? See the void where a planter with sprouting lettuce or spinach used to be?

Note the pink scrap in the middle of the dirt. It used to be a Camellia, firmly attached to the bush.

Hmm. Where could it be?

Why, look there, in the yard. How'd it get there? I wonder...

Nothing left inside but the dirt that refused to vacate.

And another lonely Camellia bud. You can't see 'em, but there are puncture marks. Say...does the Chupa Cabra like salad? Umm...not so much.

However, the neighbor's dog does. Can you see the paw prints?

Look harder...they're in there.

Right there.

Hey, I'm no CSI with those fancy cameras...I'm doing my best, here.

Not shown? The white bucket Someone was trying to root a tree in - tipped over, part of the tree missing, dirt strewn. The 2 litre bottle we'd turned into a planter for the Evil Genius's find, an acorn that was sprouting, he wanted to watch it turn into an oak tree - dirt scattered on the driveway, acorn naked and forlorn on the concrete, bottle nowhere to be found. All of the planters dug through - sprouting spinach, lettuce, tomatoes uprooted, disturbed. The front garden bed full of hopeful little tomato seedlings - trodden upon, dug into, seedlings broken, crushed, killed. The back garden bed where Someone has been working so hard to double-dig, more tomato seedlings and other seeds planted with hopes of sprouts soon to be seen - full of paw prints, dug up, run through. The rowan sticks that Someone set aside for me to make wands with - dragged across the yard and to the neighbor's house. Camellia blossoms shredded and left in the cul-de-sac, our yard, the neighbor's yard. And one big pile of something that didn't come from anyone living in this house...because we have indoor plumbing, thankyouverymuch, and if one of the outdoor cats left that, we need to rethink their diet.

I had to go over to the neighbor's house, ring the bell, and have a chat. Y'all, I loathe confrontation. I don't like causing stress to anyone. But...Someone was ready to kill, this morning, and I can't blame him. These gardens aren't a hobby, they aren't for fun...they're meant to be a food source for our cash-strapped home, and whenever possible to help provide for family and friends, too, and maybe put up a bit for winter and, if we may dream big, to possibly sell via CSA or farmer's market. We (more he than I or the Evil Genius, but still...we...) put sweat, time, effort, hope, and money into these beds, these seeds. None of that can happen of the damn dogs are running loose all night, tearing it up. And only in our yard, it seems.

So I told the neighbor that there were clearly paw prints in the garden beds, and that we're growing our food here, and it has to stop. I also mentioned the big pile of something I didn't put there. I told him "I don't want to be a bad neighbor, but I can't afford this, and we need these crops. It's our food..." He was very apologetic. It was funny, in a horrid sort of way, because we weren't talking more than a few moments when the dogs escaped the back yard and were in our yard...where Someone made it clear they aren't welcome. It seems the back gate doesn't always close securely. He really did seem sorry, and I'm hoping they either fix or pay better attention to the gate latch.

It is tempting to ask the neighbor to send his kids over to help dig, weed, sweat a little, because I think they're the ones being careless. A little time spent trying to get this red clay to yield food should help them understand why it's important. Never mind that my kid is terrified of those damn dogs and won't go outside if he sees them.


I may have joked with a friend about having a Korean BBQ, with the dogs as guests of honor, if it happened again. I'm not violent, and don't blame a critter for being what it is...so please don't yell at me for that. I am fed up, though...and while I really, really don't want to call animal control, if it happens again, I will. Because otherwise, Someone will be forced to defend his bit of Earth in very primitive fashion, and I can't blame him one little bit.


Suzy said...

At least your neighbor was reasonable and mature about it all. There are people who, when you tell them they did something wrong, just yell and somehow turn their b.s. back onto you. Defensive and immature does not win the day.

Cygnus MacLlyr said...

Your blog mentions the niceties; mine the pocket knife-yeilding.

I do so love the balance you bring to Being, Flower...

Susan said...

Well, shit. Literally.

Momlady said...

Would you like me to buy you a BB pistol? Believe me, it works. I'm really sorry about the whole mess, but glad you were able to figure out who the culprit was. And next time he comes into the yard, call Animal Control.