New neighbors moved in a few months ago. The previous family had lived in the house for 11 years, so we had a nice neighborly rhythm going on. Since we have been in our house for 24 years, we don't take to change very easily or perhaps very graciously. New neighbor has three girls (the oldest of whom is 14) all in private schools, two large dogs and an indoor/outdoor cat. Old neighbors had one boy and two indoor cats.
I have been trying to keep an open mind, but the one dog barks non-stop every time any of us steps foot in our own yard. I've tried to talk to him, let him sniff my hand, make up to him...all for naught. Annoys the crap out of me! Our dog barked at them the first time he saw them in their backyard, but after that he was like "whatever". They also replaced the front sections of their fence (which needed to be done) with new fencing that a) does not match the rest of the fence (including ours which matched their old fence), b) does not meet the fence code in our town, and c) was put up without getting a permit. Additionally they leave their trash cans out on the curb for days on end, when the city requires that you not put them out before 5 the day before pickup and remove them by the evening of pickup.
Anyway, just a few little things grating on my nerves until last night. First of all, our son is home for the first time since Thanksgiving so after we picked him up at the airport we went out to eat and hurried home to watch the Cardinals play. As we arrived home we saw a bonfire going in the yard next door and lots of kids around. The number of kids continued to swell until we had to turn our t.v. up so we could hear the game. All of a sudden we heard something that sounded at first like firecrackers going off but was instead a herd of kids clambering across our back deck. They took off around our house and out the side gate. What the hell? We went outside to check it out, and close the gates because God forbid they should do that after trespassing on our property. Kids were swarming up the private alley behind us, including some in cars. At a 14 year old's party?
We turned on all of our exterior lights, and that kept any more kids from coming into our back yard. I think the party was designed to end at 11:00, because cars started pulling up out front to pick up kids. I was looking out our upstairs front window just as a truck proceeded to jump the curb and drive through the neighbor's front yard - fortunately the house having the party. Again I say, what the hell! About five minutes later two police cars arrived, and were shortly joined by two additional cars. That sent the party-goers on their way pretty rapidly. A couple of parents came to pick up their kids while the police were there. Can you imagine being that mom or dad arriving to pick up your prince or princess and finding police at the party???
There were still kids in the backyard at midnight, when we finally turned out our bedroom light. I can only hope that having the police show up will discourage this couple from allowing any more parties at their house. Otherwise, with this being the oldest girl, the next few years will not be pleasant. After all the money and effort we have put into our property and plant material, I'll be the one calling the cops next time the little creeps step onto our yard.