Monday, August 17, 2009

Crazy old Lady next door

I'll post more when I have more time, but the gist of what's going on is our neighbor next door wants my husband's dog and doesn't seem to like taking no for an answer. We've been living here for over two years and the neighbors who live to our left are very quiet and reserved and they mostly stay to themselves. Which we don't mind, as we like our privacy. It took us nearly a year after we moved in to finally have a real conversation with the both of them and find out their first names and the name of their dog. We still, to this day, have no clue what their last name is. Anyways, up until March, they continued to keep to themselves, barely waving a hello, passing by or seeing us outdoors at the same time they were. In March, my husband adopted a floppy lil' Springer Spaniel cross at the age of 2 months. She has the kindest brown eyes encircled in rings of black like a robber or raccoon, floppy brown ears and a big freckled black nose and mouth. We fell in love with her immediately. My hubby named her appropriately, Bridget. She just looks like a Bridget. She has since grown into a sleek, fat and happy dog who will never grow into her big paddle paws and gangly long legs, which adds to her "floppyness" and lifetime of cuteness. Well, nothing like a sweet happy dog to bring together ppl, I always say. Her presence in the backyard, along with my husband and Daughter playing fetch with her, brought out our quiet neighbor's social talkativeness. It was a nice change to actually have a few nice, but still somewhat reserved and quiet conversations with our older neighbors. The wife made no secret of her attachment and love of my husband's dog. While she has her own dog, who happens to be quite aggressive ( A true guard dog personality), she seemed to have put her own dog on the back burner and given our dog most of her doting and attention. I noticed this a few weeks after getting our dog. She was coming up to the fence and crooning over and petting our dog and then she started getting our dog treats and toys and finally, a kiddie pool to play in. I thought this was so generous and very nice and didn't think anything bad about it at all. One day, I told her she was more than welcome to let herself in our backyard to play with our dog, should Bridget happen to be out there playing at the time. So, there were a few occasions, I would look out to call Bridget back in or check on her and there would be our neighbor, sitting at our picnic table, petting on her. I thought it was sweet and thought nothing more. A few times, she would ask my hubby if he wanted to part with her and give the dog to her. I thought she was just joking and I just smiled about it, agreeing that his dog was pretty irresistable to fall in love with. One day she even offered to trade her own dog for ours. I now was thinking this was starting to be a bit strange and didn't laugh it off as before. Then one day, she handed my Daughter over the fence, a dog training book for me to read. I was, to say the least, trying to not take it the wrong way. I am a certified vet's assistant and I also completed a course in dog training and I was sure our neighbor had/has no idea of this because of our meager conversations in the past, so I just tried to blow off the insulted feeling and move on. I still have her lent out book on the bookshelf and I do plan on having my Daughter return it to her at some point. Last week, while Bridget was out getting her excercise and playing with Daughter, I was in the kitchen and I looked out to see how they were getting along and saw our neighbor out there with them. I decided to come out there and explain why I haven't read her book, that I am already "trained" in dog training and of my other accreditations...and also just to shoot the breeze and chat. Well, I hardly got past the hellos and how are you's of the conversation, and was about to get to the explanation of why I have not read her book yet when she said, "I want to ask you a question." My stomach knotted up for some off reason, which is not a normal reaction for me. I said, "Sure, what can I do for you?" I was thinking she might ask me to watch her dog or see if we would watch her house or something like that, which is not a problem, but my gut was telling me otherwise. She continues, "As you know I have grown very attached to your dog and I know you and your husband are not to bent on giving her up. My grown Daugther has come over here to visit and she has fallen in love with your dog and she and I feel that we can give her a very good home, if you would let her have her. " I immediately stiffen. A very good home? What the heck does she mean by that??? Can she not see how fat and happy and well taken care of my hubby's dog is? Does she not see how spoiled she is??? She continues, "We feel that we can give her lots of wonderful attention and she would be very happy and my Daughter really just wants the dog. I mean, she is such a sweet dog and deserves the very best." Ok, now I'm getting flared up at that last statement. I'm flat out insulted. Does this lady not think we provide "the very best" to our dog? I say, very slowly and kindly as I can muster (because, I know to not disrespect my elders), "Well, I've no doubt your Daughter would love to have my Husband's dog, but she belongs to him and he is very attached and LOVES her, as do I and our Daughter. I'm sorry, but no. We feed her every day, she has 24/7 access to fresh and clean water. She has a large and expensive house, more toys than my Daughter owns and she is happy, loved and she knows it. And she gets the best care a dog could want or need and she gets daily attention and excercise, as you can see when Daughter and my hubby are out here every day playing fetch with her. Sorry, to dissapoint but she is not going anywhere." She then replies," Well, since she is not YOUR dog and belongs to your Husband, I'm going to ask him." I was, by now, shaking with anger, but I say very calmly firmly, "That is fine, you go ahead and ask him, but I might as well tell you now, he will say no." She says, "That's fine, it doesn't hurt to try, tho." After this very obnoxious offer and attempted guilt trip, courtesy of this rude, crazy old bat, she then says it's hot and she's going inside. Fine, good riddance. I should have revoked her invitation of coming over here whenever she pleased while I was at it, but of course, I lacked the bolts to do that and thus, I turned and went back inside, shaking with anger. I call hubbs up immediately and tell him what happend. He laughs it off, but his laugh is laced with concern. I tell him, I'm actually scared of our dog being stolen and I made a mental note of not letting my dog out in the back yard without supervision. A couple days later, after the intial shock from that aweful conversation wore off, I began to relax. It was on a Sunday morning, when someone knocked on our door, I wondered who could it be...only to discover it was our crazy old neighbor. Great.....I can only guess as to what brings her over.....(to be continued)