I really wasn't going to write another post until after the hard folk but the weekend proved to be really stressful for me. I went looking today for a break from it all and come away feeling like my world was going mad. Frequenting the store the other day they had small various evergreen trees on clearance. I bought nine of them of various mixes, I know most of them will reach their massive heights on this earth long after I am gone, at least if they grow as slow as the seedling my kids brought home from elementary school. They are bigger than a seedling but that blue spruce has grown maybe fifteen feet in about twenty years. Some of them will grow much faster, three, four feet a year...these are the one's I am pinning my hopes on for forever blocking the view of the neighbors behind me. I bought some bigger one's last year and I am figuring they'll achieved my goal in the next three to four years. I live on an old creek bed that use to run through here before they put the highway in that cut it off and those neighbors do to but they sit up higher than me so a fence just isn't going to do it. There was a lot of tree's out there when I first bought my house but through the years of them cutting some down and others dying off it's been a battle planting more on this side to block them out. I wish I had planted evergreens then but it was more urgent just to plain block them back up as quickly as possible. So here I am like a mad scientist running home planning a weekend of strategically planting my new found bounty in case they live to be one hundred twenty years old they'll never see another square inch of my property again. That'll teach them making an enemy out of me over a giant tree that fell apart over the years smashing stuff in their yards when the plain truth of the matter was half the tree sat on one of their properties.
Things didn't quite unfold that way though. The college kids living behind the house next door to me decided to have a party. With this being August we got a new batch of kids and these one's like to play rap music. I pretty much don't like rap music unless it happens to be one that has a snappy liking to it, is clean cut and makes it to the top of the music charts. This summer I have basically had my fill of rap music. I live across from a basketball court so it's common they pull up and try blaring it from their cars while they play basketball. Just about as common as it is for me to call the cops on them. This year the business down on the corner from my house has had about four outdoor parties behind their building where they've blasted rap music. Like a corner house down by them they too have blasted rap music most the summer. Most the time it's an annoying constant thumping sound but to distant to make out the words so I just suffer though it for the most part. When it's coming directly into your windows it's a whole different matter. With the college kids if I stayed inside my house and towards the front of it I couldn't make out the words very well. I know this really wasn't what I was planning but what other choice did I really have unless I wanted to be verbally assaulted by an unlimited number of expletives.
The next day they decide to get up and carry the party on some more. This time though I was like I really shouldn't have to deal with that. I calls the police, they tell me there's no noise ordinance during the day. I told them there's also an ordinance I have a right to the peaceful enjoyment of my property and how would they like listening to women being called hoes and killings in the hood while giving them some examples of what I was being forced to listen to. Then I told her I'd have no problem going down to the city commission meeting and asking them if listening to that fell under the peaceful enjoyment of my property. She said she'd send an officer out to talk to them. Within two minutes of making that call the music stopped. Then a few minutes later it started back up again. About an hour later I called back, she said it was still on the list of calls to respond to. Two minutes after making the call the music stops again. A few minutes later it starts back up. In my mind these kids either have a police scanner or they know one of the police interns down at the police department and she's giving them a heads up. A couple hours later I call back, this time a different person answered the phone, she says I see you called several hours ago and said she'd send the police out again. When I went and looked they changed houses to the college house two doors down, I gave the police the same house as earlier...then I realized they were just going to play head games between the police and me by moving from house to house so I just decided to tolerate it again. It went on until three in the morning.
On Sunday it's all quiet back there so I decide to venture out and plant the evergreens. About a hour into that here comes a crowd over to the basketball court. They had pulled a car onto the grass and was blaring rap music so loud I could hear every word over two hundred feet into my backyard. Then more and more of them started pulling up and I knew this wasn't going to end in half an hour, hour so I went into the house to call the cops. She tells me also there's no noise ordinance during the day but she'll send someone out to tell them they can't park on the grass. I told her I know better. She says they can play their music as long as it's not heard into an adjoining area. I told her I can hear every single word across the street into my house and if she has them move to the street it will be even worse. Then I gave her descriptive's of what I was hearing and she said she send an officer out. This is so loud you couldn't think about anything else, even if you turned on a television full blast it still wouldn't have drown out the music. I know because I tried that with the college guys and I could still hear thumping sounds and this was like three times worse. I knew I was going to be an emotional mess if they didn't deal with this like the day before so I call back and ask to speak to a supervisor. He guarantee's me that as soon as the emergency calls clear someone will come out. About an hour later here comes the cops. They don't even bother turning it down as they see the cops walking into the park. When the cops get upon them they turn it down a little bit. I see the cops come walking out of the park. They aren't turning it down anymore nor are they moving the car. The cops leave. I call back and she says she'll send them back out. I just knew they weren't coming back out, this was reminiscence of the times they use to have full out brawls going on over there, they'd run through people's yards picking up bricks and sticks to hit each other with, drag each other down the street by the hair of their heads and the police would say if they are playing basketball they are leaving us alone. Didn't matter they were destroying everyone else's environment. I voice recorded a lot of it from inside my house, the words are just as plain as day, it was horrible. I can't even begin to imagine people who'd want to listen to music like that. After nearly two and a half hours my nerves were shot. I decided my day was gone, it would be dark in another hour so I might as well close the windows and go to bed. Closing the windows didn't help. While closing the windows by my desk I remembered having seen some ear plugs in one of the drawers. I find the ear plugs, put them in and went to bed. I don't know when it all stopped, I woke up about eleven something sitting up on the side of my bed, tears started streaming down my face because I couldn't believe I had to be subjected to that. I know there wasn't no way there was but one opportunity within almost a three hour time frame there was no emergency calls where they couldn't have handled that. If this was going to be another two year battle going to commission meetings demanding the cops do their jobs instead of letting them get away with infringing upon other people's rights as long as they are leaving the cops alone. I mean this is way past pacification, it is totally destroying other people's atmosphere and I know I couldn't have been the only one calling the cops. This time though thanks to technology I have it on my phone and there's no way the cops can deny it's happening. It's just disheartening that I have to waste my time going and getting it taken care of, if I don't it will happen again and again. Just like last time.
So today I decide to go find a bit of peace in my life. After picking the grand kids up from school because they don't have a schedule bus ride yet I get a sandwich and go down to the park. Normally if I am looking for some deep peace I go well into the park but I decided to park where the odd duck hangs out to see how he's fairing in his odd ducklingness. I feel sort of a kinship with him being an odd duck myself.
I am sitting there in my car having just finished my sandwich when I notice a guy walk around my car, in front of it and up around to my side. It was sprinkling out so my car window was only open about two inches. He goes on to explain when he approaches cars, especially ones with women sitting in it he does that as it's not as alarming as walking directly up to someone in a car. He smells a whole lot like last nights brewery, looked somewhat homeless and goes on to point at a plastic bracelet on his arm and explain he just walked out of the veterans homes that sits up behind the park. My initial thought was he was going to ask me for money but instead he goes on to say that he was at the wrong veterans homes and there's another one out in a nearby city. He says this home didn't have any emergency services. Probably because of that startled look on my face he took it as I didn't believe him. He pulls out a crumpled piece of paper he said would detail he'd served if I have any doubts but my startled look was more of a I don't care if you fought at Fort Custer and every war since then I am not putting a homeless looking, foul smelling person in my car during rush hour and driving them out to a hospital in another town if that is what he was trying to get at. He goes on that his wife Michelle was suppose to be coming to get him....then he drops to the ground. He sits there a couple minutes shaking his head saying her name a couple more times. He says if he had a phone he could call her right before he falls backwards and starts rolling around. I realize he knows nothing of what the last three days had been like for me but at this point I couldn't help but break down into laughter, as in I can't believe this is actually happening, why me...I can't even catch a break type of laughter. He responds by abruptly sitting up looking mad whereas I play it off like you know that's funny you need a phone to call your wife, you know when I have the phone I don't need it but in the last hour and a half I've needed it and I left it at home. I plugged it into the charger to charge before I left and forgot to grab it. I got stuck in a back up of traffic and needed to called to tell them why I was running late, I was going to use it to take some pictures on my walk down here and now you need a phone to use and I have no phone, isn't that funny when you need it you don't have it and when you do have it you don't need it. He started laughing too. Then he starts talking about his war experiences in Iraq and how his wife told him he'd never be able to serve again. By the time he gets around to telling me how he met his wife in high school I started laughing again as it's a stoke of it's mad, mad, mad, world type of luck and they are all following me around...he goes to give me the eagle eye again and I quickly clasp my hands over my face bopping my head up and down while my mind is scurrying to find a reason to be laughing this time. I remove my hands from my face still bopping my head up and down with a broad smile on my face saying "yes, I know exactly what you mean, those old high school days, boy do I remember". He's back to smiling at me again, he gets up and says he needs to find a bus stop, he said I got money, I can get on the bus I just don't know where the bus stop is at. I try explaining to him he needs to walk to the other side of the veterans home and there's a bus stop over there. He wants to know what I mean by the other side. I told him to walk past the construction going on, up that road through the vets facility and when he gets to the next road there's a bus stop. He still doesn't seem to quite comprehend what I was trying to tell him to do. Then I said if you walk straight up this road, pass the construction, up that road you should see a store, walk towards that store and there's a bus stop that will be across from it. The bus stop isn't in front of the store but across the street from it. He said, "so when I see the store there will be a bus stop there"....to which I replied, "yup, a liquor store, been there for years, right across from the veterans facility". The word "liquor" cleared up any doubt or confusion...I am pretty sure he's no closer to that veterans hospital in the nearby city then he was earlier today nor was I waiting around for him to come back, I decided to high tail it deeper into the park. As I was backing up I happen to have to look off to one side, there was the odd duck still waddling around with his adopted tribe. For a very few brief seconds out of the last four days life was good.