June 23, 2011

Garage Sale Saga: Part 1

When we bought our home almost five years ago we loved the idea that it was on a culdesac.  It was only Hayley then and I had visions of her riding around and around on a little bike.  I loved the idea that there would be little traffic and that it would be quiet.  That was my dream.

That dream was crushed a couple years ago when a neighbor, who shall be called "J", decided to make a business out of having garage sales.  Now honestly, I have no problems with garage sales.  I'm not a garage sale person.  I've only had one and I hardly ever shop at garage sales.  Soon, I noticed that "J" was having a garage sale nearly every weekend.  Last summer, there was a period where "J" had a garage sale seven weekends in a row.   

I fumed.  I vented on Facebook and to my neighbors.  I was also recovering from child birth last summer.  However, I was become increasingly irritated with the fact that my kids couldn't play out front because of all the traffic.  Or when I couldn't even get out of my street because there were so many garage sale people blocking the street.  Note to garage sale shoppers: Be aware of where you are parking, other people live around that garage sale too.  Don't be rude!!  Anyways, one of my other neighbors contacted the city.  The garage sales ended for a few weeks, started again and then ended for the season.  There was nothing more to do.

About a month ago, I watched as a trailer brought loads of new things.  I dreaded what I knew was coming.  I knew I was not going to go through another summer like the last two again.  Important note: The town I reside in, residents are allowed two garage sales per year.  My neighbors and I shared our thoughts and feelings.  After four weekends of garage sales, we decided it was best to talk to her and share those thoughts and feelings.  We wanted "J" to hear from her neighbors. 

Well..."J" laughed off many of our concerns and made excuses.  When myself and one of my other neighbors brought up the fact that our kids can't kids their bikes out front; she said that normal people don't let their kids play in the street.  We bit our tongues.  That was hard.  She also stated that the city has no limits on garage sales and that the other neighbors didn't care.  "J" mostly met us with a gotta-go-what-I-gotta-do attitude.  And closed her door.

The next day we took a little poll from some of our neighbors and found that all of them shared the same concerns.  We also delivered a copy of the city's municipal code to "J"; well we taped it to her door because she wouldn't answer.  Funny, the next day those pages were found plastered to our cars after it rained.  Nice huh? 

And that's where things are now.  Since things have gotten a little ugly, we're no longer dealing with her personally.  We never wanted it to get ugly.  Sadly, "J" doesn't really seem to care about how everyone else around her feels.  We tried to be nice about it and offer alternatives.  We're now dealing with the city's code enforcement.  Stay tuned...

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