Monday, April 6, 2015

Here's a New One

So, I was sitting by a window working on a collection of short stories and I looked up to see this coyote bolting up out of the arroyo.  I looked up on the hillside to see a man in desert camo with a thermos hiking down past my No Trespassing sign into my back yard.  I yelled at him, but he didn't hear me.  He went down into the arroyo and came back up, marching along the alley between my horse paddock and my neighbor's fence.  I yelled at him again and he didn't hear me.

The horses were too focused on me yelling to notice him coming up from behind them, and once they detected his presence, they spooked and took off in a stampede.  He was still oblivious to all of it.  When he finally was practically on top of me, he looked up and waved.  "Didn't you see the No Trespassing sign?" I asked.

He pulled some earbuds from his ears and said, "I can't hear you."

"Didn't you see the No Trespassing sign?" I repeated.

"I still can't hear you," he said and kept marching.

This was not an old man, and something told me he was full of shit.  I know you don't have to be old to be losing your hearing, but he was acting shifty.  I repeated myself a third time, and he still insisted he couldn't hear me, even though he was only a few feet away.  Then he said, "I'm sorry, I was told this was an easement and I have the right to be here."

Aha!  So, he did hear me.  Note that he did not deny seeing our No Trespassing sign.

I said, "It's not an easement.  It's our property."

I was about to explain that I didn't build my fence right up to the neighbor's fence because I didn't want horses touching noses over the fence, but he said, "I can't hear anything you are saying.  Look, I'm just trying to get through here out to the hiking trails without having to go all the way around to the main road."

By now he was about to pass my house and get into my front yard.  What could I do?  I said, "Okay," quietly to myself in resignation, and guess what?  He heard me!  He said, "Thank you so much.  Sorry to take time out of your busy day," in a sarcastic tone.

I think I am going to have to put up some wire between the two fences to make it clear that it is not an easement.  What drives me bananas is that if the guy likes hiking so much, then walking a couple of extra blocks to the main road shouldn't be a problem.  He was just being blatantly disrespectful of boundaries.  At least, he tried to be fake nice to me.  He did lose his temper for a second there when he complained about having to go out of his way to the main road.  The problem is that these people know they can get away with it, because if I called the police, the hiker would be gone by the time they got here, and I'm not going to waste my time following him to see where he goes.  Hopefully, that confrontation was enough to make him think twice about coming through again.

The people that holidays and nice weather bring around our place really get my hackles up.  I'm beginning to understand why my neighbors kept all those large, barking guard dogs on their property.  They'd been putting up with much more than us in the years before we moved in.  I'm sure that they started out putting up signs, and when that didn't work, they talked to people, and when those same people kept coming back, they started calling the police and taking out restraining orders, and when even that was ineffective, there was nothing to do but sic their dogs on them.  Of course, I'd still prefer to deal with an occasional trespasser than being barked at every time I walk out of my house, but I'm saying there are times when I can empathize with them.  Some of these trespassers can be hard-headed.

There is no simple solution.  You put up a fence -- they climb it.  You talk to them -- they claim to be deaf, even though they were listening to music just seconds before.  If they are interested in hiking in the desert, but they don't live right near the desert, there's this thing called a car that they can drive to the desert instead of traipsing through people's back yards.  I think the guy had to claim not to hear me, because he knew he didn't have any legitimate excuses for his behavior.


Cut-N-Jump said...

I bet if you had a gun aimed at him, earbuds or not, he would have 'heard you' as you chambered a round... just sayin

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

CNJ - You're so funny.

Brenda said...

Hopefully this guy won't try to make it a habit since you "allowed" him to do it this one time. I'm always fighting that at work with our claim reps. If I bend the rules for them on something 'today' they'll expect it next time. The "Talking Heads" who tell me to make an exception for the reps don't understand the kettle of worms it'll open up and you can only argue with them so much before they start thinking you're being insubordinate. Sigh.

achieve1dream said...

I'm with CNJ. I totally would have picked that moment to do some target practice on my own property!! I can't believe people climb fences there... if they climbed a fence here they probably would get shot. Ugh. Trespassers piss me off!