I don’t mean to give the impression that I dislike country life, on the contrary, I love the mountain I get to gawk at every morning through my front windows. I love my creaky groany house. I love my garden, with all its dandelions and thistles and strange orange fungi. I love the loudmouth little iridescent birds sitting on my washing line. I love driving through the farms and vineyards and canola fields and rubbernecking the cows and sheep.
As always the problem is people, in this case the local Illuminati, the individuals who seem to have an inordinate amount of power and influence in these parts.
As mentioned before, I have a warehouse next door that is rather hideous, but in a certain light has a strange spooky gothic charm.
I was extra pleased when the building was sold and the owner began to fix. I braced myself for the noise on the basis that it would be worth it in the end. This week they began replacing the roof and crumbling sandstone bricks. I retreated to my workroom and left them to get on with the job.
I do my gardening in the afternoon after six, due to the heat and when I emerged from my bubble, I found that the workers had climbed over my fence, rigged up this incredibly dodgy looking scaffolding, bracing it with a plank held down with bricks.
In the process, they broke one of my yuccas
“trimmed” fronds off my palm tree and dumped those on the ground
Serious health and safety non-conformance coming up
Not that anyone around here cares too much about the health and safety of the populace.
Instead of simmering over the weekend and tackling the owner on Monday with a full head of furious steam, I called him right away and was very reasonable and polite. He apologised and said he didn’t know what they were doing. And isn’t that just the problem? Let your workers loose on a building and don’t take the time to check on what they’re up to.
Then my sister reminded me of the fact that it is illegal to build any structure within a certain distance from a boundary. This issue arose when my pyromaniac mother burned down the neighbour’s shed full of furniture and was required to pay for the damage. My mother claimed the structure was not within the permitted distance, and although she had to pay for the furniture, the neighbours had to demolish the structure, so it was a lose-lose for both parties.
So anyway, I consulted the oracles and although the permitted distance varies from area to area, it seems to be 2,250m. Out came my trusty tape measure and the distance is a mere 1.10m. I am within my rights to call for the partial demolition of that entire building.
I’m not going to do that. I don’t want the hassle and I’m a very reasonable person, but I see no reason to allow strange men to creep around my backyard breaking things, and if that sounds sexist, sorry, not sorry.