Branching Out Will Do You No Good

, , , , | Friendly | April 10, 2021

Next door to us is a rented house; we don’t know the owners but we get along with the tenants.

No one takes care of the gardens on the property and weeds and plants grow wild. I guess the tenants should take more care, but they seem to not even use the outside space. We trim what comes over to our side and ignore what’s happening over the fence. 

Over the years, the tree growing in the back gets bigger and grows further over the bounties. I trim outside, but no one does the back fence that is shared by the car park.

One stormy day, I notice the branches sway and creek. Underneath is a guy’s shiny BMW. In chatting with him, it’s his pride and joy; he is worried about the tree but has nowhere else to park it.

I can’t stand to see what happens next, so I do some sleuthing and find the agents who manage the house; the tenants “forgot” or don’t care enough to look.

Me: “Hi, do you manage [address]?”

Agent: “I’m sorry, I cannot divulge that information.”

Me: “Ah, okay. Well, just so you know, if you do, they have a tree that is surely going to lose a branch, which will crash into a new BMW that parks underneath.”

Agent: “As I said, I cannot divulge that information.”

Me: “Err… Yeah, I’m not asking you to. I’m sure if I was the owner I would want to know about a possible lawsuit if you were representing me.”

Agent: “And I cannot tell you if we manage that particular property.”

Me: “Okay, this is going nowhere. If you represent them, then tell them.”

She tries to interrupt but I carry on

Me: “Either way, I will be putting a letter through the door, marked for their attention, to say that I have contacted you on this date to inform you.”

Agent: “As I said, we cannot divulge—”

I hung up. She wasn’t getting it. Or, she was just being belligerent. I wrote the letter, marked it as “For owner,” and gave it to the tenants. They didn’t care about any of this and told me that they hadn’t seen the owner in months, anyway.

I gave up; it felt like a marathon trying to help anyone. Next year, another storm hit, and a sizable branch broke off and smashed the windscreen of the BMW and scratched a load of the paintwork. It sat there for months as the resulting legal work carried on.

The owner came round to shout at me for not telling them or not making enough of an effort. I told them where to go in short words they would understand and slammed the door.

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