So the workmen came by yesterday and installed a new gate to replace the decrepit, sagging old wooden gate in the backyard. Not bad, eh? They threw in the fake, weather-resistant, never-paint, never-Thompson’s-water-seal wood for “free.” (Note to self: must remember that pitch for editorial clients…)
Ruby the Corgi Pup is beside herself with doggy joy. Noticing that this gate rides a little higher off the ground than the old one, which had to be dragged open, she feels a glimmer of hope: she can burrow out underneath that thing!
So she runs over there and goes digdigdigdigdigdigdigdig! She’s so excited. Fortunately I have some neglected flagstone slabs, which I’ll have Gerardo and his underling haul over there to serve as a “floor” that she can’t excavate.
A-n-n-d while the men were here, they installed a newly fabricated metal fence and gate to block off the archaic trash-can alcove from passers-by who want to use it as a latrine.
Sorry to be politically incorrect about our drug-using homeless brethren and sistern…but IMHO someone who drops mounds of feces decorated with dirty toilet paper outside your gate is best called a bum.
The fence guy, whom I’ve worked with before with good results and who has high BBB and Yelpish ratings, confirmed that, as I suspected, the line from wall corner to wall corner is indeed my lot line, and so no code is violated by installing something to block people from going into the disused alcove to do their toilet duty.
He also reported, when I described what’s been going on, that completion of the
train lightrail up the middle of Conduit of Blight Boulevard is pushing the homeless into our neighborhood. He says the vagrants who used to hang out along Conduit of Blight NW have been unhomed by all the additional foot traffic from the train riders and by the increased police presence. The city (with, of course, its favored developer) is determined to make the train a showpiece, and so keeping the peace around the train “stations” is a great deal bigger issue than keeping it in the deteriorating tenements that front the train tracks has ever been.
Who? What? Apartment residents? Who cares about them?
One guy who lives over there told me that every car in his apartment house’s parking lot had been vandalized, broken into, or stolen. Imagine what fun it would be to live in a place like that!
Oh. Sorry. I got derailed (heh) for a minute.
So here’s the new bars, which I sincerely hope will help with the issue at hand.
The view from the interior:
So I’m pretty pleased about it. It’ll be a little bit of a nuisance, but it should help some with security. And really, because now I won’t have to padlock the gate into the yard — or drag it across the ground to open it and give it a sharp kick to shut it — the hassle factor should be a wash.
The gate opens outward and provides plenty of room to roll a wheelbarrow in and out. I hope it won’t create a problem when the time comes to replaster the pool…but I doubt that it will. The pool guys got through a much smaller gate the last time the pool was plastered, with no complaints.
Of course, this will just mean the bums will go into my neighbor Terri’s alcove, right next to mine. Our two alcoves are the first ones in from Neighborhood Drive NW that are out of view from the street. If you dropped your drawers in the alcove belonging to the house behind me, you’d risk being seen, even after dark. So Terri’s and my alley entries are very convenient.
She won’t notice — Fence Dude looked at her collapsing gate, which has sunk off its hinges, and said it hadn’t been opened in months. How she gets her trash out beats me…probably drives it around the block to drop it into the communal garbage can. Or maybe she just tosses it all in the blue recycling barrel. WhatEVER. At least I won’t have to clean up piles of sh!t to get to the trashcan myself. If I see it there, I’ll complain to her and failing that, to the city.