I moved into a cul-de-sac recently and discovered that one of my neighbors has no sense of boundaries. Not only does she think the entire cul-de-sac is her property, but everyone finds her wandering ways endearing and sweet. “That’s Sarah Collins,” they say with soft drawls and smiles. “She just does whatever she wants.”
Now, I’m trying to be a good neighbor. I want to get along. But can’t I walk out the front door without Sarah Collins strolling by to check on me? And isn’t it enough I have two dogs to clean up after already? Must I add Sarah Collins to the mix? When I walk by her owner’s house, I notice his lawn is pristine and green. Mine is marked by urine spots. Coincidence? I think not.
I don’t have any options at this point either. Sarah Collins has been ruling the neighborhood for the last ten years. As I speak, she has entered my yard for the tenth time tonight. No longer happy with the view from the ground, she’s walked up the steps to my second story deck and is standing at the gate, waiting to be let in.
I refrain from yelling at her. I want to be neighborly. Still, I previously lived in the land of leash laws and picking up your own dog’s poop. Down here, that’s not the way things work. In fact, my neighbor’s are entertained by the sight of me parading my leashed dogs around the circle, leaning down occasionally with one baggie covered hand. “Oh, we just leave it,” they say. “It’s what dogs do.”
Perhaps, with time, I will become as mellow as the people I live among. For now, though, I wish Sarah Collins would go home, and stay there.
Ever had a neighbor’s dog drive you insane? How did you deal with it? Suggestions wanted in the comments.