The sun was shining, the birds were singing, and spring was in the air. Everything looked tranquil in Mountain Valley Estates. A golf cart carrying a dog, a goat, and a chicken was slowly driving around the subdivision.
A group of women were standing in the yard of one of the houses talking when they saw the cart.
Sarah Squirrel: Look who’s coming. It’s the Yard Police.
Amelia Alligator: Sarah, we better get home.
Josephine Jaguar: You’re right. We all know what happens if you’re not at home when they stop by.
Amelia: They write your name in their little book and you get a letter from the Association about some imaginary violation.
Sarah: It wouldn’t be so bad if they actually worked for the Association. But Fred Fido got bored and talked Henry Goat and Emma Chicken into doing this. The whole thing is ridiculous.
Amelia: I agree. And you can’t talk to them about anything. If they say it’s a problem, it’s a problem.
Sarah and Amelia went home, and Josephine went inside. On her way home, Sarah saw Fred talking to Fluffy Angora.
Fred: I need to talk to you about a problem with your yard.
Fluffy: What’s the problem?
Fred: Henry measured your grass, and it’s almost an inch and a half high. You know the Association rules say that it shouldn’t be more than one and a quarter inches high, and the preferred height is one inch.
Fluffy: But the Association made an exception for us. Al works out of town as a mouser, and we have four young kittens.
Fred: OK. Then I’ll write it up as a warning. You need to tell Al to get home and mow it. I’m going to talk to Jim (the Association President) and tell him what’s going on.
Fluffy: All right.
Fred: Have a good day.
Fluffy: Thank you.
Fluffy closed the door. How dare that dog accuse them of not taking care of their yard. And that goat had been eating the grass, not measuring it.
Fred: Sometimes, I hate doing this job. It seems like no one appreciates us.
Emma: They just don’t understand how difficult it is to keep a place this big looking good.
Henry: Look! Over there! Water usage violation.
Fred went up to Jean-Luc Hedgehog who was holding container of water.
Fred: Jean-Luc, are you aware that you are in violation of the water usage code the Association has distributed?
Jean-Luc: What do you mean?
Fred: Your house’s address ends in an odd number. You can’t water your lawn until tomorrow.
Jean-Luc: I’m not watering my lawn.
Fred: Then why are you carrying water around?
Jean-Luc: It’s a watering can. I’m watering my vegetables.
Fred: They’re green, so they’re part of your lawn.
Jean-Luc: That’s ridiculous. They’re new plant. They’ll die if I don’t water them every day.
Fred: I’m sorry. It’s a violation. Here’s your ticket, and you’ll be hearing from the Association.
Jean-Luc took the ticket and stomped into the house. If he’d stayed outside, he was afraid he would have dumped the water on Fred.
Fred walked back to the cart. They rode in silence for a while. Then they spotted a tent in Ellen Elk’s backyard.
Fred knocked at the door, but there was no answer. Emma wrote a note and taped it to the door:
Dear Neighbor – The tent in your backyard is a violation of Association rules. If you have guests, they are required to stay in your house, not a separate structure. Please remove the tent immediately. Your Friendly Neighborhood Guardians
When Ellen got home, she read the note. Ellen was furious. She called the Association, but no one answered.
Note: The dog is holding on voluntarily
They knew she had a tent in her yard. She had to pay a $50 permit fee to put it there. No one was living in it. She was going to use it for her daughter’s birthday party.
The golf cart made a few more stops before they went home. They decided not to stop a Josephine’s house to cite her for violets in her yard. They were all afraid of her.
A few days after this round of visits, everyone received a letter. Jim Giraffe was inviting everyone to a meeting to discuss Association rules.
Next week: Will the Association management side with Fred or the homeowners?
Pictures courtesy of Google Images.