Saturday, May 12, 2007

Violation! Violation!

We were rudely awoken this morning by the sound of a neighbor across the street mowing the lawn. It was 6:50 am. Who ever heard of such a thing? I could have sworn there was some sort of city ordinance about not mowing before 8 am, but when I did a half-assed search of the internets, I didn't turn up much. It much just be common decency that would make such demands. I did determine that you can't let the grass grow longer than 8 inches. Good thing SodaBoy is out mowing now, or we might have been in violation on that one.

The second crappy thing to happen today involved another neighbor, and another noisy tool: a chainsaw. Even ickier. The woods behind our house are owned by the university, so this morning when three men starting cutting out a large tree, I went up in the woods and asked them if they were with the university. Seems reasonable, right? They own the land, they can cut trees if they like. Silly me. It turns out my next door neighbor had hired them.

These neighbors have been very nice to us. They actually came over one day this spring when I was at work, and asked SodaBoy about removing another tree. The tree in question is dead, and is right along the apparent property line between our yards. The neighbors weren't sure exactly where the line was, and they wanted to get an OK from us to take down the tree. I kind of like having the dead tree there, as it provides great wildlife habitat, but since we don't know exactly where the property line is either, and they were so nice about it, we acquiesced. I suppose it could become a hazard eventually, so it did not seem like a wholly unreasonable request.

However, they did not ask us if they could cut a large living tree from the university property. And the tree cutting crew today did not touch the dead tree we'd talked about. They only cut away at a tree they had no right to touch. The tree was partially down, having apparently blown over in a storm years ago, before we ever moved in. But it was still alive today, and fully leafed out over most of it's branches.

I was furious about the situation. My blood pressure and heart rate surged. Those woods were one of the main attractions for us in buying this house. We've always been prepared for the possibility the university could develop back there. We just weren't prepared for random neighbors to treat it as their personal woodlot. I called university security, and they seemed concerned, agreeing to send someone right out. Although two squad cars appeared fairly quickly, the officers didn't do shit. They simply informed the tree cutters that they were on university property, and then left. They didn't even talk to the property owners.

Today I lost all respect for my neighbors, and learned that university police are huge pansies.


Nicole said...

Oh dear, that is terribly sad. We leave even dead trees standing for the most part in our woods. The birds seem to be thankful for that.

Aliki2006 said...

What a violation! I would have bene livid as well.

elenajoyce said...

I understand when children play the "I'm awake, so everyone in the world is awake" game ... because they are children! But when adults start doing loud yardwork in the wee hours, oh how it makes me shake my fists with rage.

P.S. Congrats on sharing your health insurance.

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

So did they actually kill the tree? AK!

I would be INFURIATED! Oh dear. Neighbors can be the worst. AK!