Thursday, September 1, 2011

The good, the bad, and the ugly

I am almost at my wit’s end and I swear, I am nearly ready to resort to drinkin’ but it’s not a weekend and you know how I am with rules that I set for myself.

It started after work, which by the way, was inordinately busy.

DSC_0534 copy 2

I had some errands to run which took extra time because the traffic in the nearby college town rivaled my recent trip to New York City.

I kid you not. It was nuts, I tellya. Bumper-to-bumper.

DSC_0533 copy 2

And then I came home, expecting some peace and quiet.

And all I can hear since the moment I opened the car door is the awful neighbors who have moved into a rental home that lies along our driveway.

They have dirt bikes. And they have turned their yard into a dirt bike track.

When they first moved here about 3 weeks ago, I went over to talk to them to tell them to please stay off the  property here. I told them I didn’t want to call the police before coming over to discuss it politely with them. The husband was very nice and apologized profusely. And he’s kept to his promise to stay off the property. The noise today, however, is jarring my preserves (as my mother used to say).

I believe one of the bikes is not running properly, and the way to get it to do so is to keep using the throttle over and over and over and over and . . .

Oh, my God help me.

DSC_0537 copy 2

Last week, I called the county sheriff’s office to question the laws regarding noise and the installation of a dirt bike track on your rental property. They told me that as far as the track goes, they were basically within their rights to do so. But if it got too loud, to call them and they’d pay a visit. They did suggest, however, that I find out the name of the property owner and give them a heads up about the mud hole that used to be their front yard.

It used to be a lovely yard, but when I went over there, the grass was gone and it was nothing but mud and dirt.

Today I found out the name of the property owner.

DSC_0513 copy 2

My husband is not as annoyed as I and he suggested I go take a walk.

Is he kidding? All I can hear are dirt bikes!!!

It is just so sad . . . to have this piece of hallowed and historic ground on which we live, for it to be marred by this awful noise.

DSC_0549 NN Ginger Sky copy 2

And to make things worse, today our cat killed a young red bellied woodpecker. We are both so angry with her. It was just the icing on the cake of my shitty day.

Damn cat.

Damn low class neighbors and their loud-ass dirt bikes.
Oh, my God. I am on a tear. Sorry about that.
123 Signature
Photos were taken on a walk yesterday which, for some reason, was much quieter. And again, my sincere apologies for the cursing and the rant. It ain’t always sweetness and light here.



Country Girl said...

ps ~ my husband just brought me his headphones with the music in them. They are helping.

~ C.G.

judi/Gmj said...

OMG!!! call the owner, call the cops, call a swat team!!
enough! throttle them now before the long weekend! I smell a full fledged bike/beer blast going on day and night!!
you are an admirable gal to have stayed still so long!

Brynwood Needleworks said...

Hi Kate:
I've been away from visiting for a while, but I'm back - and for this most relevant post, no less.

We have lowlifes like that living behind us and even the "Man of the House" participates. In our case, they're ATVs. Round and round and round their yard (illegally, as we DO have an anti-ATV ordinance in our city), like mindless morons. They've lived there longer than we've lived here, but they act like they're still the only house in the still-growing suburban subdivision.

They ruin my poolside relaxation and lanai-based dinners with friends. Hell, they even ruin a good afternoon nap. I'm always grateful when school starts again because the daytime riding ends...but the late day/nighttime riding increases.

The worst part is that, even with an ordinance prohibiting their riding within ONE MILE of another home, the cops HAVE TO CATCH THEM IN THE ACT to do anything about it!
They ride just long enough so that by the time the cops have arrived, they're back in the shed. Wait 30 minutes and then go at it again. I'm going to video record them some time with a date/time stamp and THEN show it to the cops! (Like I've got nothing better to do with my time.)

I love my home, but I swear to God, they'll be a large motivation when we finally decide to put our house on the market to move. Inconsiderate, apparently ignorant, and thoroughly low-brow bunch just pisses me off.

Thanks for putting our shared rant out there. You have my deepest sympathy.

Christie - Fine Lines said...

Headphones are a great idea, but I know how it is to have your once peaceful surroundings altered!! I think I'd be contacting the owners of the house in search of some support.

Jeanne Walker said...

Don't feel like the lone ranger. I live in a 'development' which is very nice. We have a close neighbor who has a dirt bike. He is in his 30s and acts like he's 15years old. He gets out there and revs that thing up and it bounces off my home! Then he goes flying down our street doing wheelies and then gets up on the sidewalks and trails. I know he's been reported. He'll cease and desist for awhile, and then it starts back up. He also has a 4x4 truck which he put monster tires on and dual exhausts. He comes and goes with his windows down (even in this 110 degree heat wave we've been in all summer)with his radio (rap) blaring.He was in the service and my husband thinks he must have been injured and has brain injuries...he acts like a fool whenever DL has talked with him...about his disturbing the peace! So I feel your pain! I hope the owners of the rental evict these people living down the lane. I am so tired of people being disrespectful and inconsiderate of others that I, too, curse and rant and rave! God forgive us, but really!!!! So get yourself a nice cold glass of wine, some crackers and cheese, sit on the coach with your legs elevated and play some restful music, but don't forget to call the landlord and report his tenants.

Deb said...

if would sure be nice if everyone could be thoughtful of their neighbors...unfortunately it doesn't always work that way....sorry about the bird...cats will be cats...hope you evening gets better....

Country Girl said...

I am so sorry to hear that so many of you have similar problems. The noise from these things is just incredible, isn't it?!!

~ C.G.

Tammy said...

I totally hear you - the kids next door to us have a dirt bike and it drives me insane with the noise and then the turn around out on the street, I guess their parents don't care, but it's a busy street and I don't want to look out and see a kid with no helmut dead and/or bleading out on the road. It's just frustrating. Rand and cuss away!! Good luck and I hope the owner of the place will do something!!

linda said...

the most noise we have in our little corner of suburbia is an ancient dirt bike that is brought out on occasion. putt putt putt.

The thorn in my side was our neighbors of OMG FORTY YEARS. In the past few years they'd call the city for every nit-pickin' little thing, like 4 inch grass....or the deer in the hood that were potentially going to jump through their living room window. Seriously.

Time and patience won. They moved. I am now blessed with a fabulous neighbor.

The homeowner will be glad that somebody is looking out for his lawn....thank God your neighbors are renting. Hope they suddenly develop some sense and courtesy and cut out the nonsense. Or develop a big leak in the gas tanks of the noisemakers. Hmmmm.

Cloudia said...

SO sorry for you and George!

Hope this can be resolved and you regain your peace.

Like us all to come over and 'reason with them?'

Aloha from Waikiki;

Comfort Spiral
> < } } ( ° >

Ellen said...

Tell us how you really feel Kate!

Neighbors - there's nothing worse than a bad one. Good luck.

Andi said...

The level of disrespect for others that some people have just gets my goat.. I think getting ahold of the property owner -- and the headphones -- are a good idea. I am sure he did not intend for them to destroy his property. My yard is my sanctuary, I hate one someone infringes on it.

Bonnie Zieman, M.Ed. said...

I have a thing about that kind of inconsiderate noise too. How can people be so selfish as to not consider how their loud behavior might affect their neighbors?

A friend of mine was nearly driven insane by neighbors with teens who played basketball in their driveway from dawn to dusk - bounce, bounce, bounce, bounce -
My husband would probably take the whole thing as yours is - and annoy me even more for not 'getting it'!

Good luck. If you organize a protest march, I'll drive down from Canada and join you!

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

My teenaged son terrorizes our neighborhood with similar sounds on various vehicles. But because he's covering so much ground (many acres across our neighborhood and the next one over), he terrorizes people quickly and then he's on to the next victim.

I wish I could make it better.

If you have an i-pod, I'd suggest wearing that often. If you don't have an i-pod, you need to get one, it's the only thing that saved me on my family vacation. I haven't used it since then, but having those little earbuds feed me nothing but music was a God send.

Mary said...

Loud noises like that can definitely be a form of torture! We have the volunteer fire house around the corner, and although I appreciate their service to the community, I wish they would be a little quieter. With modern communications, there is no need to blast their siren 24/7. And don't get me started about their "wetdown!" Sure, have fun, blast the sirens for a few minutes, but then, for the love of God, STOP! Last time, the sirens went non-stop for over an hour, I kid you not.

OK, so that's my rant! I hope your issue gets resolved soon. Maybe the owner will be able to get rid of them for ruining the lawn...

Low Tide High Style said...

We have neighbors who have dirt bikes, but thankfully they aren't as loud probably because they are smaller bikes, Honda 50s or 70s maybe? I had one of those growing up, but we were only allowed to ride it in the woods where no one could hear us...our neighbors were not so thoughtful back then though. And they are loud, especially if they are souped up to be used for motorcross!

If I owned the property I would sure as heck want to know that someone was destroying my property with their lack of respect! I hope you are able to contact them and let them know. I would do it anonymously if you can though, because you just never know these days how people will react! I'm sure you aren't the only neighbor who takes issue with them, but I bet others are afraid to confront them. Is there a homeowner's association?

I'm sorry so many things aligned to cause you to have such a bad day, and I hope the music is helping! Maybe you can take a little bit of comfort in the fact that it will be getting darker much earlier soon, so that by the time they get home from school they won't have time to ride!


sharon said...

nothing worse than noisy neighbors. Esp. when you have had a bad day.
We had a neighbor that had two dogs that would run up and down the fence line every time a car would come by and bark. Their barking was so noisy one couldn't hear themselves think. I called the cops and I was standing outside and they couldn't hear me talk on the phone. They finally moved because of all the complaints. I wish you luck on your neighbors.
At least you don't have to look at a size 42DD bra and a pair of huge panties hanging on the front porch. I guess we have to take the good with the bad. Hope your day is better tomorrow!

Sallie said...

Oh, I'm so sorry to hear about your horrible neighbors. Call the owner! I hope he does something about his renters.

tj said...

...Oh Kate, I'm so sorry you're having a shitty day. Seriously. I would def' contact the homeowner and tell 'em what is going on with their rental and see where it goes from there. Hopefully that will put an end to it. I hope, for your sake.

...We had bad neighbors once that lived at the end of our road. He would get drunk on weekends and then beat his stepson's dog. We think they were drug dealers of some sort 'cause they purchased the home which was around $600K, then months later they're asking me if they can put their trash in with ours 'cause they can't afford their trash bill, THEN months later he goes driving by in a brand new Hummer and her in a brand new Mercedes. Yeah. Nothing funky goin' on there! lol... F-i-n-a-l-l-y, things started to fall apart for them, his "business" folded, they lost the home, they split to Mexico and we got their two very sweet Labrador Retrievers that they left behind in their dog pen with no food or water. Our now new neighbors bought the foreclosed home for a song and they are the most wonderful people. Even so, I still long to live in the middle of 40 partially wooded acres without a soul in sight, that is my dream. :o)

...I hope you have your headphones on listening to music you love while enjoying a nice glass of wine with your feet up and George laying nearby. I also hope that tomorrow is a better day for you my friend. (((hug)))

...Blessings :o)

Unknown said...

Hopefully they'll decide they don't like it there and move on. I bet they have snowmobiles for the winter!

tainterturtles said...

You are so honest Kate....I hear ya! When jet skis invated our peaceful lake, I felt the same way. Noise really bothers me too. My advice is to look into your local township ordinance and see if noise is prohibited. You have every right to complain. Good luck.

Linda said...

It's very quiet here at the lake. You and George are more than welcome to come & relax anytime.

Linda said...

Hubby too but I know how much he loves to visit people he doesn't know:)

Jan's camera said...

I just hate the sound of any kind of motorbikes. Noise pollution. I would be furious as well. Definitely contact the owners.

Cindy said...

The sound of dirt bikes messing up the quiet at your house is enough to cause anyone to curse! I'm right there with ya'!

Tammie said...

I was so upset with our Scrappy cat when she killed one of the quail I feed. I've pretty much decided I'll have to stop feeding the birds cause it breaks my heart when she gets one. We had her first before I fell in love with bird watching and feeding. Doesn't seem fair to either, but I feel your pain.

Tammie said...

I was so upset with our Scrappy cat when she killed one of the quail I feed. I've pretty much decided I'll have to stop feeding the birds cause it breaks my heart when she gets one. We had her first before I fell in love with bird watching and feeding. Doesn't seem fair to either, but I feel your pain.

Chrissykat said...

Unfortunately it seems so many human beings are just so incredibly inconsiderate, selfish, rude & ignorant of anything two feet past their own nose. I'm so sorry you are having to deal with that. Just reading about the noise level was making me anxious. I don't do well with noise. So frustrating I have no doubt. I will, however, stick up for Blackie. I feel awful for the innocent woodpecker but Blackie is just as innocent. He is just doing what his kind has been doing for thousands of years. It is innate behavior and unless he is an indoor only kitty, it will happen again. Sweet Blackie...please don't stay mad at him.

deb said...

I feel your pain...we too have neighbors with bikes and four wheelers that will ride them up and down the dirt rode, drives me insane. You know you buy property in the country looking for peace and quiet......but not everybody wants the same thing.....they probably rented in the country just so they could ride their bikes and such....they just don't care that they bother other people. Kind of like second hand smoke you know....second hand noise......I hope you find some peace and quiet soon. I hope there is something you can do about it.

Mental P Mama said...

Ugh. Let's move to Virginia!

MrsB said...

I hope you call the property owner quickly - I know what constant irritating noise can do to you - it can make you think about doing horrible things to people. A neighbor had a huge rottweiler (which I love) but he was let OUT at night in a tiny yard to bark til dawn - we thought it would kill us all. One neighbor got the video camera out and taped the dogs barks - situation handled - the property owner probably had no knowledge that his land is being ruined and would appreciate you telling him/her. Good luck - and about the cat - they are murderous - that is their nature - sometimes is it better not too is what they do. Got to love them anyway.

Roberta Warshaw said...

I feel your pain. Noise like that is what drives a person insane. I live in a neighborhood of constant construction. The backhoes with their reverse "beeps", the saws, the cranes, the cursing, the lunch truck. It goes on and on and on. Every single day since I moved here 15 years ago. Just when I think there are no houses left to tear down, another one goes. Even the Ronald MacDonald house went condo. Can you imagine?
I have always said if I had to lose one sense, I would choose hearing loss. I can only imagine the wondrous quiet of that.
Good luck with your horrible neighbors.

Anonymous said...

Destruction of rental property is bad enough but add to it the end of peace and quiet?....OMG....I am so sorry Kate.....take care of you!

beth said...

we almost bought some property last year to build on, but was caddy corner from the fantastic 5 acres?
a huge farm, on tons of acreage with renters from the college and a dirt bike path and 4 dirt bikes.....

i totally feel your pain !!

so you know what, bitch away. because you have every right to and i totally would be calling the homeowners and the sheriff on a regular basis.


Marianne said...

I take it that, "Love thy neighbor as thyself" ain't going to cut it here. I hope the property owner kicks them out!

Daryl said...

Blackie only did what comes naturally to her .. she's an outdoor cat after all ... and forget what A says .. call the property owners ... til these renters-to-buy actually do buy they are destroying someone else's property.. call the owners!

And then breathe .. deeply .. exhale .. do it again .. and then try closing your eyes and think MAINE ... xox

Hilary said...

Ack.. that would make me crazy. I have a neighbour (Biker Dude.. that last "e" is optional) who revs his VERY LOUD BIKE all day long, sometimes. Thankfully, not often but his drinking voice (always in use) is also VERY LOUD. I feel for you. Another chat or two might help.. hopefully.

Sorry about the woodpecker. I do hate to see well-fed birds doing those kills but it's instinct and nothing more. Still.

The JR said...

I have a yard full of killers and nothing I can do can stop them. I hate it too.

I have the Hatfields and McCoys living next to us. You should hear it when the Hatfields are fighting with each other.

And at times the McCoys are shooting up everything.

Alli said...

wow. I've never dealt with anything quite like that.... Living in a college apartment complex sometimes people have loud parties but it last for a night then it's over.

A lot of people in my hometown have dirt bikes and four wheelers but we live in a very country area and no one lives close enough to anyone else to ever hear it I don't think. I think calling the owner of the property is your best bet right now. They could maybe put a stop to it.... That would be so irritating. Your blog is so peaceful and I'm sure that reflects on your land and your spirit there. I hope you find a solution soon!

Jeanette said...

You should definitely complain to the property owners..they probably want to know that their renters have destroyed the lawn and are disturbing the neighbor! Please don't be mad at your cat...he's just doing what cats do! Maybe a bell around his neck to give the birds a little warning? Hope you have a peaceful weekend!

mrs mediocrity said...

Oh, I feel for ya, a few years back our neighbors, who are basically out behind our house got their son one and all day long he drove it up and down the driveway, four hours at a time. It drove me insane. I think after a while he just got tired of it.

I love your first photo, I walked by some of those same berry-like things on my path the other day, do you know what they are?

Hopefully your neighbors will be out of town so you can relax this weekend!

Michelle said...

Adding my voice of sympathy and understanding for the murderous cat AND the noisy neighbors. Only I don't have the considerate husband who would bring me headphones and music!

Lili said...

Oh my word, you definitely need to pour yourself a glass of wine, and then maybe see about getting yourself a rooster, a loud, crowing-at-the-crack-of-dawn rooster. It's got to be better than the noise from those a-holes. I can relate. xo ~Lili

Donna S. said...

Horrible!! It is so frustrating when something like that invades your home/space & peace. There are bad neighbors everywhere. Let's hope they don't pay their rent & get kicked out!!

abb said...

Life sucks at times. I really don't like those times. Hope the noise quiets, dear friend.

Bluebird49 said...

Thankfully, our neighborhood is an "older" one--with older folks. There are a couple of homes who have teenagers, and their trucks have loud mufflers or whatever, but no dirt bikes and ATVs thank the good Lord.

I love my iPod and earbuds, but honestly, when my husband --who is 4 feet from me--talks on the phone, I hear him way better than my iPod no matter how loud I have it. Something's wrong with that! If you want to take a "quiet walk"--having to wear headphones does not cut it. I'd really contact the owners about the mud puddle that is now their front yard. I know people have to rent sometimes, but they can at least respect the property they're renting!! Our neighborhood isn't one with expensive houses at all, but at least it is one where the neighbors know one another. and respect one anothers others privacy. Also--we're there for each other if needed. Maybe I should stop begging my husband for us to move--things obviously could be worse--much worse.

Carolynn Anctil said...

I. Hate. Other. People's. Noise.

We have upstairs neighbours whom we refer to, when we're being polite, as The Stompersons. I so feel your pain.

Maybe you could enlist the help of the Squirrel Squad to go over there and chew through the electrical wires on the bikes...just a thought.

Oh, and about the cat...she's really just doing catty things. She knows you likes birds, could probably tell you needed cheering up, so she went out and got one for you. It's the thought that counts.

Ocean Breezes and Country Sneezes said...

Kate, I can totally relate to your rant! Our FORMER (thank goodness) neighbor had 2 young boys whom he bought dirt bikes for. The have 2 acres (min. in our town) and rode dirt bikes every other weekend - since the divorce! Our little 20 lb. dog would go nuts when they would start on Saturday morning. I couldn't open my windows because of the noise. As I said, since the divorce - he had his wife arrested on Christmas morning in front of his two young boys after she took a nutty because he spent tons of money on 2 snowmobiles. He told the police that he was in fear of his life! He's an engineer and she's a dentist . . . he couldn't afford the home because he couldn't keep a job - he's a jerk, after the divorce and had to sell! I can't say I miss them! Hopefully your neighbors will be gone soon!

Karen said...

Glad you got the neighbor contact, they should know their property is being made into a mud hole. My son has a quad and his friends have dirt bikes... we let them ride on This Old House's forty three acres occasionally, and only for an hour or so. I don't know how the neighbors feel about it, but I know we keep it to only once in a while, and only for an hour.