Saturday, June 6, 2009

Waiting for the Weather to Clear

Even though I only got one weekday off from work, it was a really nice week in the neighborhood with my nosy neighbors being away on vacation. I could go outside in my pajamas to let the horses out of their stalls in the wee hours of the morning and feel confident that I wasn't being undressed by my neighbors' eyes. I could talk to my horses and know that no one was hiding behind something nearby and eavesdropping. I didn't get a chance to ride on my property because of my work hours ("emergencies" happening every day) and the thunderstorms. That one equitation lesson at my neighbor's place was all I got.

I'm looking forward to Sunday, because that last thunderstorm is supposed to roll through today. On the other hand, I'm not really looking forward to Sunday, because I know that my neighbors will probably return from their vacation this afternoon or tonight, since they never miss a day of church on Sunday. Then all my privacy will go right out the window. They'll probably be making a million trips between car and house to unpack. I mean if they make 50 trips between car and house when they don't have anything to unpack, I can only imagine how hyper they will be when they actually do have something to unpack. It's just been so nice to be able to look out my windows to check on the horses or see what my kids are doing, and not have one of those neighbors looking back at me. Talk about always being "up in your grill."

A couple of odd things happened that got my hackles up while they were away. One morning I walked outside to let the horses out of their stalls and found one of the horses' salt blocks shoved between the walls of two stalls. The horses sometimes roll the salt blocks from one side to another, but they can't move them very far. I got chills wondering how that salt lick got moved so far.

Since it was in an out-of-the-way location, I figured someone in my family moved it because they were sick of tripping over it. However, that didn't make any sense, because no one other than me had been doing any work in the barn all week. Just for peace of mind, I asked everyone in my family if they moved it, and they all said no. I remember it was where I left it the night before when the vet came out to look at Gabbrielle's ear, because Bombay and Lostine were licking it. I wondered if the vet or his assistant moved it, but they were here such a short time and never went near the far stall.

I started thinking that this was the mark of "The Pervert". The Pervert is a young man in his late 20's or 30's who used to live with my nosy neighbors. I call him a pervert, because he was way worse than the old man when it comes to staring, and way worse than the middle-aged woman when it comes to hiding behind things, loitering, and stalking. He was a smoker, and used to come onto our property at night to look in windows, and he'd purposefully leave behind a calling card, which was usually a pile of cigarette butts, as if to say, "Ha ha! I was standing outside your window all night smoking, and you didn't even know I was here."

We locked our RV lane gate, installed motion-sensor lighting, and a night-vision camera to deter the guy from trespassing. I also tried to catch him several times by going outside to hunt him down, but he was stealthy. The problem with my theory that The Pervert moved the salt block was that if he came up our drive, he would have triggered the outdoor light, and he would have had to scale the gate since it was locked, which the dogs, the horses, or any of us would have heard. Also, I hadn't seen him around in years.

I decided to shrug it off as my own paranoia. My husband said that if the ground got wet enough, the horses could have slid the salt block. The problem with that argument is that I keep the salt blocks under the stall awning so that they won't get wet, and I also built up the ground under the awnings so that water would flow away from the barn.

Then one night I walked outside to put the horses into their stalls and who did I see walking down the street with my nosy neighbors' dog on a leash, staring at my son as he played basketball on our driveway? The Pervert! He had been living in their house all week taking care of their dog and I didn't even see him until then. I knew my theory that he had returned wasn't too far fetched.

So, this morning I went outside to let the horses out of their stalls and I nearly jumped out of my skin. A car tire that I nearly tripped over in front of the paddock gate was now on the opposite side of the paddock, and the horses had been locked up in their stalls all night! I'll bet the guy has been scaling the chain-link fence that is between our two properties and walking around my paddock at night. He wouldn't trigger any lights or cameras there. He probably was petting my horses and tripped over the salt block in the dark, and moved it so he wouldn't do it again. Same with the tire.

If my nosy neighbor's don't return home today and the guy stays at their place for another week, I'm planning on working with the police in setting a trap for him. I wish I knew what time he comes around. All I know is that something is in one location when I lock up around 8:00 PM, and it's in a different location when I walk outside at 6:30 AM. Interestingly enough, I haven't found any cigarette butts. I wonder if he stopped smoking.

25 comments:

monstersmama said...

That is REALLY CREEPY! You cant call the cops and tell them that some weirdo is trespassing at night!? Creepy, creepy. Wonder if the neighbors know what kind of man they let house sit for them...yuck :S

Anonymous said...

I think you need to run an electric wire around your fence and turn it on at night when the horses are in.

Katharine Swan said...

NM, it really is a pity you don't have electric fencing. It would be hilarious to see the look on the guy's face when he got his ass shocked trying to break into your paddock. >;-]

Groomer Angie said...

OMG!! I think it's time you invested in a big dog or 2! Maybe a big Mastiff?? My answer would be to sit up all night, hiding somewhere myself with a shotgun laying across my lap! Sheesh! I hate that you have to go through that kind of crap!

Kate said...

Major league creepy! I hope you manage to catch him and get the evidence!

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

I suspect the man my neighbors let into their house to sit for them is their son. Sometimes I wonder if the woman taught her son all these stalking maneuvers or if he taught them to her. One time he was staring blatantly at me from his side of the fence. I got sick of it and started walking straight toward him to ask him if he had a problem. Right then one of my horses took off running, I glanced away for just a second to see what was up with the horse, and when I looked back they guy was gone. It was a creepy scene right out of the movies. If he were acting normal, there's no way he could have moved that fast to evade me. The woman is the same way. She'll hold eye contact with me and stand in one spot for a long time, and as soon as a glance away then look back, she's gone. A few times I spotted her running behind an object, but most of the time she moves so fast that it is as if she disappeared into a puff of smoke.

HorseOfCourse said...

The Pervert is a fitting name. Sounds like having a talk with the cops regarding the whole family is a good idea. Creepy. Your home should feel safe!

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Hmmmm, must be The Pervert cares about his health now. hah!

GIRL!!! YOU HAVE TO MOVE SOON! For your own sanity and safety...for you and your family...and horses, too.
Crazy stuff, NM.

What you need is McCauley Culkin (sp?) from the movie Home Alone to set up 'fun traps and tricks for your little trespasser/stalker.

One idea: Before you go to bed at night, take some fishing line or even sewing thread (black would be best) and wrap it around everything and anything you can think of. Tie some buckets of water, a bunch of soda cans, or other noisy messy things to a few ends, so that when he walks through then threads, he will set off an alarm and feel rather uncomfortable.

You can play "I'm the Spider Jerk! And you are caught in my web!"

*mumbling as I walk away* Crazy people. What a mess....

~Lisa

Once Upon an Equine said...

That's really bizaare. Do you have 'no trespassing' signs around your property. He would probably still trespass, but might help with legal stuff if it got to that point. They sound like very weird and scary people.

KD said...

Curiouser and curioser.... what a weirdo.

sue said...

Oh my goodness!!! I can't believe that you have to live this way!!! your home should be your peace.. I am so sorry that you are dealing with all this sort of thing....

fernvalley01 said...

Sounds very creepy and unerving!

Andrea said...

WHAT!! I would set my alarm and try to wake up to see if I could catch him, or maybe install an electric wire to see if that keeps him out! Oh that would make me soooooo mad! I feel so bad for you having to live next door to such crazies!! Then when your neighbors come home I would tell them that he has been in your paddock and he needs to stay out!!

And I too think you need some big scary Doberman dogs and then a HUGE shotgun. Some nice outside watch dogs that will eat nosey neighbor's little dogs.

I think I would be looking for some place to move, or I would start making their lives miserable, maybe toss manure over by their fence??

Andrea said...

Oh, and put the electric wire at the top of the fence so he gets shocked after he has climbed all the way up!! LOL!!

Reddunappy said...

OH my, these people would send me over the top! I dont know how you put up with it! I really really like the electric fence idea though, he he he.

JAN'S PLACE said...

I agree with Angie.. a big scary dog!

It is a win win for everyone including the dog.

Paint Girl said...

You are giving me the chills! That pervert character is not normal! I agree with the hotwire trick! I would love to see that.
Please call the cops if he is around much longer! My other half would be sitting outside all night with a shotgun!
Please stay safe!!

Leah Fry said...

Super creepy. Who need it? I hope it becomes possible for you to move.

Breathe said...

I'm with Groomer Angie - time for a big junkyard dog.

Mrs Mom said...

Holy Hannah NM. Yeah, I'd be camped out somewhere off and on w/ my firearm as well.

Looking on the up side- at least he is not trying to get in your HOME, and he is not harming the horses, right? Not much of a sliver lining there, but ....

Heres hoping Pervy Man goes far far away. If we were closer, I'd loan ya my Hubby to have a lil' neighborly chat with those creepy folks for you ;) hehe

Cheryl Ann said...

He is too creepy!!! Were there any footprints? Ugh(shudder)!!!

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

I did look around for footprints, but the ground was so muddy that it was just a hodge-podge of hoofprints and my bootprints. I didn't look too hard because it was raining in the morning and I wanted to get inside. What I probably should have done is look along the fence where he most likely climbed over and landed hard on the ground. It's rained so much since then that anything would have been wiped away.

lytha said...

a friend of mine had a barn tresspasser and she had the clever idea to sprinkle baby powder all over the barn floor. she got a bunch of perfect imprints of his feet, and used it as proof for the cops.

i don't know if that would work for you, but maybe.

assuming no light goes on, he might not see the powder.

~lytha

ryde2rop3 said...

Atleast you can see when your neigbors are staring at you. I have ppl that board where I do and they have set up 2 security camersa. They watch every EVERY move I make and its on tape. They have installed extremely bright lites that are aimed directly in my horses pens ,at eye level. My horses have been having eye issues and a loss of sight for my 32 yr old. I fianlly had my vet threaten them with turning them into Animal control for Animal abuse. They did re aim the light but it slowly has been getting moved back to where it was. I tried reaiming it onch and they called the police on me and charged me with mischeiveous mischief for touching THEIR light. I hate that I am on a tape somewher for them and whoever to watch. These girls need to stop being so parinoid and get a life. They have 3 horses and never ride them.. it amazes me. They have taken all the fun outta me and my horses. I feel spied upon..
So be glad you can at least see your enemies

manker said...

wow this is your house and home... you shouldnt have to play "inspector clousseau" geez.. I'd go with the electric fence and/or those big sensor lights which come on when motion is detected.. That , a coupla big dogs and a rifle... oughta git r done

stay safe
gp in mt who drove thru a nice snow storm to the barn thank you very much..:)