I’m really missing that I no longer get these encounters anymore. For over 10 years we had nothing but an open field behind our house. Until we put up our fence a couple of years after we moved in, we would get deer in the yard, right next to the house to eat my flowers. The day we moved in, a coyote took up residence against my back door and scared the crap out of me when I went to open it. After the fence was put up, we would often get sights like this one because it and the kids swing set that used to be there were the perfect perches for birds to stand watch and hunt in the field.
We used to get so much wildlife up close. Birds, deer, coyote, tons of rabbits and the occasional fox. Now that the land finally sold, the only thing I get are annoying neighbors that leave lights on all night to shine in my bedroom windows while their dogs bark endlessly, day and night. It made me cry when the first house went up so close it felt like it brushed our fence. We not only lost the peace and quiet, but we lost the view and we lost the wildlife. I’ve only heard the coyote calling maybe twice in the two years since they began building, and that was at a distance I nearly didn’t hear them.
Now, our yard that was once quiet and free of nosy neighbors and prying eyes feels like a fish bowl. My view is ugly houses in numerous shades of dirt brown and gray. The only trees still in view are the ones in my yard and the tips of the line that used to define the edge of the field. The only hawks I see are the ones that are flying over to find new hunting grounds somewhere else.
We knew when we built that eventually we would get houses behind us. Were actually told construction would start the following year, but it didn’t happen and it didn’t happen, so we got used to that unexpected peace and seclusion. Now, I miss it so much I want to move. I am now very much in a love hate relationship with where I live. I love our house and our general location and proximity to everything, but I hate having lost so many of the other things I love. Moving means starting over and very possibly not having some of the things we love about where we are now. It is also incredibly limited as I refuse to pull my kids from their school.
For now, we will live with the loss and put up with the ugly view and the noise and the bad dog owners (not the dogs’ fault they haven’t been taught any differently). It has pushed me to evaluate pretty heavily what my priorities are, though, and I am right on the very edge so I’m trying to keep an open mind as to what my options are to keep as many of the things that are important to me intact. At the moment, that means planting a whole lot more trees and bushes (and trying like hell to keep them alive in utterly horrid soil), having hubby send nicely worded emails to the new neighbors to keep their grandkids from chucking cupcakes into our yard because they think it is fun and contemplating the niceties of finding my own large lights to shine into other peoples windows or some sort of automated firehose set up that would be triggered by noisy dogs only to realize that it is fun to fantasize about, but I’m just really not that evil.