Tuesday, January 15, 2013
A View from the front yard
I have the strangest view of a next door/across the street neighbor in the neighborhood. This is my front view, with my neighbors in constant sight. No, there isn't a street in front of my house, it dead ends at my driveway.
Almost immediately upon them moving in, it became evident that these were 'outdoorsy' kind of people. I don't mean hunters or fishermen, but people that just hang outside. Daddy was and Rum Son is a smoker. So I figured they didn't want to smoke in the house. Dead Mama likes to putz around in the garden and Crazy Woman likes to talk to trees. What completely floored me is that all that outdoor activity was in the driveway facing my house, even though the back of the house has a huge wrap around L-shaped deck and the front porch is wide and covered.
Originally the Garage door was open day and night, but recently the garage door opener must have died, because they were raising it manually. Now the garage door just stays closed all the time, I believe there is a junk car in the garage. It would be unusual to have a car in the garage, but not unusual to have a junk car.
When they first moved in, there were at least 5 cars at the house. A daughter, who my husband and I referred to is the "Normal" daughter, lived with them along with her 2 teenage sons, and all adults had a car. Over time, cars would die and it became evident that Daddy was a hoarder, because no car left the property. At one point, about 18 years ago, there were 3 cars parked at the back of their property, but in clear sight of my front yard, that had ceased to function. Its always been about a 50-50 ratio of running cars to junk cars.
Over time that first lot of junk cars became buried in a jungle. It is a highly wooded area, or it was, and there are parts of the yard that we have intentionally left as Florida scrub forest. One of our areas just grew into the junk car lot and hid it from view.
After sitting in the back for several years, I saw a tiny little bulldozer, a bob-cat, out in the yard and they were working on removing the shrubs around the cars. I ran out there because they were clearly on my side of the property line clearing out an area full of lantanas and sapling live oaks that I wanted to keep. The bob-cat was being driven by my other next door neighbor, who was even more disgusting than Dead Mama's family. At least Dead Mama's was friendly, this guy was surly and well known by a local TV Consumer Reporter, because the guy was a shoddy contractor. Yes, I was just that lucky.
After a detailed boundaries discussion, I stood out there while they cleared their property, because I knew the surly contractor would intentionally bulldoze my property, just to piss me off. So I witnessed the discovery of the lost car.
Seems over time, they had forgotten there were THREE cars back there. Daddy got all excited, because he knew he could get all those cars back running again, then he could sell them. Rum Son joined him in opening the hoods and looking inside. Christmas to Dead Mama's family, for sure. The surly contractor pulled them out from the weeds and sat them front and center in the yard.
For weeks I watched as they periodically worked on one or the other of those cars. Now you got to ask yourself, if they were fixable, why the heck didn't they fix them the years ago that they broke? Finally they accepted defeat and must have called one of those junk dealers. I watched one day when a truck with a flatbed trailer pulled up. There was a detailed discussion between Daddy, Rum Son and the truck driver, with assistance periodically of Crazy Woman. The discussion got heated and the junk dealer went back to his truck and left, sans any junk cars. I don't know if they were asking money for the cars or if that dealer refused to take them because of condition or probably more likely, he was fleeing for his life after Crazy Woman's last comments. I supposed they found another dealer, who either paid them for the scrap or decided to take the cars, because one by one they disappeared from the yard.
Only to be replaced by new junk cars about a year later.