some things never change (a flashback)

different neighbors, still doggy drama, seventeen years later…

(obviously, and somewhat sadly, different dogs – calum passed in 2007, buffi in 2010)

07/12/2002: “good doggies…BAD neighbors”

last october i got a home equity loan so i could do some home improvements and pay off some debts. the improvement / remodel project is looking like it’s running on austin highway repair time, but never mind that now…

when you get a home equity loan, one of the things they do, if it hasn’t been done recently, is do a property line survey. what was interesting about MY survey was that once all four stakes were in the ground, only one of the four was in what i thought was “my yard”. the front yard east stake was in my neighbors yard by about four feet. the west one by about six feet. all this land, technically MY yard, that my neighbors had just kinda annexed over the years.

in the back, the east stake was actually in MY yard (the one of the four), but the west one was so far west that the survey crew (i was at work at the time) pulled a board out of my fence, and one out of my neighbors so the stake could go about a yard into his back yard. i didn’t know they had done this.

the next morning, when i let the dogs out to play, they saw new territory…my neighbor’s back yard, which was now accessible by the opening the survey had created. now TECHNICALLY, there was a good portion next to his fence that was actually MY yard, but he wasn’t concerned with that. my phone rang…

“sean, are you aware that my fence has been pulled apart, there’s a stake in my yard, and your dogs are lounging on my patio furniture?”

i replied with, “no i was not, that’s from the survey to show where my yard actually ends, and let me get them…”

with that, i leaned my head out the back of the house and yelled, “BOY…” calum came running, and buffi followed him. now for those of you who have never been to casa de sean, you’ve never seen my dogs. they’re a bit intimidating till you get to know them. and if you DON’T know them, and look out your sliding glass door to see calum and his big, black and tan, 118 lb self in your backyard, it’s gonna throw you for a loop a bit…so neighbor panic makes a bit of sense. i went, nailed the board back in my fence, and was done with it.

now my fence is in indescribably bad shape, and with all the rain, the board came back WAY loose as the fence got drowned and the soil turned to swamp. a little “buffi prying” yesterday, and i went out to let the dogs in to find i had no dogs. i yelled, “BOY…” and in came calum through the fence, with buffi in tow. they were back in the house when the phone started ringing. this time it was the neighbor wife…

“sean, your dogs are in our yard…DO something about this!!!”

already done…already back in the yard. figured i’d do the fence repair (with screws this time) when i got home since i was running late to work. well, i hit the gym after work, went and got dinner, and by the time i made it home, it was too dark to do fence repair; so i just went outside with them ’cause they NEVER pull that “bail the yard” shit when i’m watching them…

but when i went to get the mail, i found a tag hanging off my door. my neighbors had called ANIMAL CONTROL!!! now look, i have neighbors further down the street that let their dog’s run ALL the time. i’ve had the neighbor on the other side have her daughter come over, and her dog’s favorite place to lounge is under the tree right outside my bedroom window in my side yard. no big deal (not to me, at least….my dogs HATE it). but animal control? what the fuck? here’s what’s worse…the notice was for three things…

1. dogs don’t have a city licence
2. dogs don’t have rabies shots
3. dogs are wandering the neighborhood loose

okay, first off, i’ve lived in this city for twenty three years and NEVER heard of a lockhart city DOG licence. no fucking way. i used to have to call the old animal control guy occasionally when my four foot caiman would get loose, so i got rid of the caiman. he met my dogs and never said anything about any damn licence. for that matter, when i leave town, i have my buddy lance, who was a POLICE OFFICER in lockhart for years watch the dogs, and HE’S never pointed out any licence issue. second, they HAVE rabies shots…i took them to the clinic two weeks ago, as i do every year. and “wandering the neighborhood”? they were in ONE yard, which legally is part mine anyway. he and i are SO going to have some words tomorrow…

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