On Saturday I finally cut down two sections of our gate that blocked our driveway.  The gate sections had been in bad shape for several years and every snow storm we have had resulted in one more piece either breaking or falling off.  The gate pieces would be stuck in snow and we would have to dig around them.  We have spent many night listening to them bang in strong winds when the rope we used to secure them fell off or someone forgot it.  We really don’t need them anymore for right now.  I just hate the feeling of being exposed and people being able to “accidentially” walk up our driveway, dig through our garbage, or leave dog scat when going by.

The catalyst was my significant other knocking off his rearview mirror when driving forward as one piece of the gate was going backward. After I took some of the cement glue we have and stuck his mirror back the best way I could, I got out our hand saw and went at it.  It took about fifteen minutes to cut the two pieces down because they are wood.

A man, who I have never seen before this week, and now have seen almost every day walking by, looked at me out there and said: “it looks like you are cutting the metal.”  He kept walking.  I scratched the metal part, by the way.  

The issue of fences with me is like nails down a chalkboard.  We’ve had problems with neighbors about our fence.  When we bought our house, and even with an inspection and the Town coming to do reassessments, no one said anything about the then six foot stockade fence we had around the property.  Then about eight years ago someone called the Town on us saying the fence was two feet over the legal height on a certain portion of the property near the corner.  A man came to the door telling us we had two weeks to cut it or face fines per day.  The letter we got was sloppily written and spelled names incorrectly.  Tax dollars at work.  So a week later I got out the same hand saw I used on Saturday and began cutting.

We know which person called because they hid in their house for three days and avoided all contact with us for years.

The irony of the fence cutting is the man who helped me by getting out an electric saw and helping me, his wife is now one of the monsters we live next door to.  I am forever grateful to him for helping me even though I can no longer speak to him and his wife considers me less than dirt.

The other irony is throughout our Town, there are several properties with these illegal fences.  I even stopped and knocked on one door.  The woman listened politely and then told me the fence company hadn’t said anything.  That fence is still up and it’s on a main, busy intersection near a school.  I don’t get it.

Then about three years ago the now convicted drug felon decided, without advance warning or permission, to drill plywood pieces to his side of our fence because his dogs kept eating and tearing pieces of the fence out. (The dogs aren’t let out of the back property.) He then would have a member of his family fix and/or replace the pieces.  I stood there, gritting my teeth, watching and my significant other just looked at me.  There was nothing we felt we could say at that time.  That fence kept his “cousins” out of our hair and still does, sometimes.  Now we are in a quandary about what to do, if anything.  We have nails coming through in weird places and even some concrete leaked under where he tried to prevent the dogs from digging under.  I’m looking at privacy hedges for the spring to plant in front of the fence.  

The fence came with the house.  I will always picture the house with the fence.  I want to put a new, handmade one in, little-by-little, but I don’t know if I will have the time to do it.  It’s starting to lean over in some places and trees and plants are helping the process.  I’m not picky about color.  I just want a nice fence and a boundary line.


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