a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: Fencing Parts 3 and 4

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Fencing Parts 3 and 4

The back corner showing daylight through fence, compost bin, neighbor's new fence to the right.
Closeup of part of old fencing, showing daylight through fence plus previous owner's wire-fencing fix.

Yes, you missed parts 1 and 2. (Although I might have covered Part 2 in this blog at least a couple of years back.)

See, my yard borders 4 other yards--the neighbor to the right, who replaced that stretch of fencing about 4 years ago (I paid half). The neighbor behind me, who replaced that stretch of fence maybe 2 years ago. (I paid half.) The neighbor to the left, who had told me that he was getting estimates for new fencing. And...my fourth neighbor is a gigantic empty lot of 290 acres, which is destined to eventually be a park, but who in fact cares not a whit that it shares 10 feet of fencing with me.

That 10 feet of fencing has been in a sorry state since long before I moved in. You can see in the photo that there are actually boards missing (not the ones to the left--the fencers have already started dismantling the fence to replace it--but all the bits of daylight you can see through the shrubbery) or shoved to one side or the other.

You can also see that the shrubs behind the round compost bin have kicked the bucket this year; not sure why entirely. But this is bad, because the other thing that you might be able to imagine is that, if Tika stands on the content of the bin, she can now put her feet on top of that old fence and look out into the wilderness. This has been worrying me a bit; I've left the shrubbery carcasses in place as a slight deterrent until I could figure out what to do.

There is a chain-link fence behind the wooden fence, but there's a slight gap. And you can see from the close-up that the previous owner had fastened wire fencing to this side of the wooden fence as a fix to keep their dogs in the yard. My fear has been that Tika would try to get out over the top , and would either succeed or would end up in that small gap between the chain link fence and my fence with no way to get her out. Fortunately, that hasn't happened.

Here's the bad thing. To replace the fence--because it's scrunched firmly between the chain link and the shrubs--they have to pretty much remove the shrubs.

Here's the other bad thing. I was intending to get some WORK work done today, like as in money to go do agility. Just before 10, there were some loud bangs outside. They continued enough that I started to head out to the yard to see what was going on. The dogs preceded me, raced around to the side yard, and started barking up a ferocious watch-dog storm. I followed, to find a complete stranger in my yard, my neatly piled stack of pipes and firewood tossed aside, and 16 feet of fence missing.

Someone somewhere neglected to inform me that I was going to have a fence removed today. I am glad only that I was home today. What would have happened had they cornered the worker in the yard without me there? Or if they had taken off through the open fence? It makes my stomach hurt, thinking about it. So instead of being able to plan to remove things that I had on or next to the fence, and do it slowly, carefully, and deliberately, I rushed through it; had to move an entire compost pile rapidly with my cruddy shoulder complaining the whole way, and no comfortable or easy way to do it because all my yard-waste-moving containers were full.

Thank goodness I keep a 35-foot stretch of chicken wire on hand for just such emergencies and was able to construct a temporary fence across part of the yard, leaving us no room for playing fetch or for practicing agility (such as those weave poles I'm supposed to be teaching Boost this week). Had I had more time, I could've constructed something further out in the yard using some of my 4x8 wood lattices, but noooooo...

So today instead of working I spent almost 4 hours moving things, trying to communicate with someone with whom I had no common language (while he tried to get someone on the phone who could communicate with me), building fences, etc. I'm physically exhausted. I've hardly done any WORK work and I'm pissed off about that, too.

I'm just grumpy. But I'll be glad to finally have the last of the crappy fencing replaced, although I have no clue how I'm going to pay my neighbor for it. I told him I'd have to repay him in installments. I'll have to pay the fencers up front for my 10-foot solo section, but that's a drop in the bucket in comparison to 70 feet of fencing. It's ironic, I guess--or maybe just annoying--back when I had a lot of free cash (like, before Remington's cancer and various random money wastages), my neighbor had no money to pay half of that fencing. So I let it go. Now he apparently has enough to spend on all kinds of things; has been madly dealing with all kinds of delayed yard and house maintenance. And now *I* don't have any ready cash. Oh, well, that's what equity lines of credit are for...

What a day.

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