Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.

I’m turning into an old fart


When my brothers and sister and I were growing up we pretty much ran around the neighborhood, the woods or spent our time out on the lake. But there was one place we didn’t run, and that was our next door neighbor’s yard. Though our neighbor had two kids of his own he wasn’t really kid friendly.

We weren’t allowed to walk across his yard to play with kids that lived on the other side of him. We weren’t allowed to skate on the part of our lake that was behind his house. We couldn’t even touch his grass in order to take his dog back home when it wandered over into our yard to visit our guinea pig. (Robbie the collie and Barney the guinea pig had a very strong friendship.)

That was all fifty years ago.

From our gardens.

This week I found, on our lawn next to our driveway, a large deposit from what must have been a very big dog. I was incensed. This is not the first time we’ve been the recipient of doggie gifts that are not Katie’s. I’ve ignored it when it’s at the further corners of our yard which is bordered on two sides by roads. But a month or so ago the deposit was left right next to our mailbox. And this week it was right next to our driveway.

It was sort of in my face, and I found myself turning into my childhood neighbor, but with no one around to yell at.

So I made a sign, and posted it right next to the offending pile. It said “Who left this? NOT OK! Pick up after your dog.”

The porch pots are vivid.

Of course no one admitted to being the offending human. I don’t blame the dog, though if it could read I’m sure it would take it’s business across the street to avoid me. I picked up the pile after a couple days, and put the sign away. I’m sure I’ll need it again.

But that incident alone didn’t make me think I was turning into an old fart. Oh no, there’s more.

Yesterday I was moving mulch from a very big pile which is sitting in the driveway, to a sweet little spot in our front yard under the trees, and nestled in among the hosta.

Gonna need a bigger wheelbarrow.

I could feel the drop in temperature every time I tipped a wheelbarrow of mulch onto the ground under the trees. A little microclimate exists there, so cool and green. I thought how nice it would be to have a chair there, a place to sit and watch the world go by on the street.

Which solidified the old fart notion.

Our elderly neighbors (defined elderly because they are older than me) used to sit in chairs in their garage and watch the comings and goings of the neighborhood. They have a lovely deck on the back of the house, looking into their pretty backyard edged in woods, but I don’t think they ever sat back there. No, they sit in their garage on sunny afternoons and watch the street, and us.

And now, here I am, thinking how nice it would be to sit in the front yard and watch the street.

Cool relief.

Yep I’m an old fart, not going to apologize. I figure I can sit under my tree in a comfy chair on my nice soft mulch and watch people walking their dogs down my street. And if they or their dogs get too close I’ll be able to tell them to get off my grass.

Somewhere in the cosmos I think my childhood neighbor would finally laugh.

Author: dawnkinster

I'm a long time banker having worked in banks since the age of 17. I took a break when I turned 50 and went back to school. I graduated right when the economy took a turn for the worst and after a year of library work found myself unemployed. I was lucky that my previous bank employer wanted me back. So here I am again, a long time banker. Change is hard.

34 thoughts on “I’m turning into an old fart

  1. I, too, have an elderly neighbor who sits in her garage watching the world go by. I don’t know if it’s “an old person thing” or not, but it seems to me that sitting on the back porch watching the wildlife would be more interesting! You’ve got a lovely spot to sit, and being able to catch the offending pooper would be an added bonus! Shame on their humans!!


    • I know, right? Sometimes I think it’s a city v.s. country thing. The elderly neighbors close to use came from the city where, I guess, everyone sits in their garages and watches people and cars go by. I’ve never done that before but I can sort of see the appeal, at least for some of my sitting and watching the world time.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. OMG Dawn I had such a similar conversation with my husband yesterday, we’re finding ourselves behaving just like the kind of boring, insular, middle-aged people we used to be so disparaging of, and to our surprise we love it! 🙂


  3. Dawn–this made me laugh. I live across the street from a very large park area. People walk their dogs up and down the street, to and from the park. I love watching that from my comfy chair in our living room. I sometime sit in my garage to visit with my outdoor cats, but I feel so like my parents….I can relate.


    • So far I haven’t sat in the garage…though down at the lake in Alabama I did, a couple summers ago, sit in the boat garage and watch the lake because it was cooler than sitting on the dock.


  4. If sitting on chairs in the shade in front of the house is your definition of old fart-ness, we are old farts. Just started doing that this spring. Love the breeze and seeing the youngsters going up and down the street in their newfangled motorized vehicles. 😉


  5. Progressing, or regressing? Not sure sometimes which it is that we do, but it seems to happen to all of us. Sometimes I feel like the old mom who tries to tell her kids how to do things she knows they know how to do. That’s when my daughter says “Carol!”

    Liked by 1 person

    • Haha…I never used to argue with my mom when she gave advice. I just acted like I was listening, then did what I wanted anyway. Katie, so far, hasn’t given me the “DAWN!” Yet. She does, however, do what she wants to do.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. That was a big thing in Arkansas …people were always sitting in their open garage…seemed an odd thing to do but then again …in a world so separated by so many things….maybe it’s nice to have a connection with someone briefly passing by.


  7. That cracks me up. I know for sure the older I get, the less tolerant I am. Of lots of things.


    • Me too. I kind of feel like now that I’m not working I shouldn’t have to do anything I don’t want to do and that includes listening to people I don’t want to hear and picking up dog poop from anonymous neighbors.


  8. Too funny. We have no home garages to sit around but I see elderly neighbors sitting at the mall or benches outside in the neighbourhood smoking a fag, on their own world, watching the world go by not saying a word to me as I say Hi. I wonder if the old farts were the ones picking on my flowers in my garden and just trash it below the plants for a show.


  9. That’s a huge pile of mulch!!! You probably deserve to sit and watch!!!


  10. But you KNOW you are not alone!


  11. Hehe, your not alone!! As I read through all the comments, I totally can relate! You make me giggle, and it is what we all will become I’m afraid! 🤣❤️


  12. We old farts like other old farts!
    I’ll join you under the shade tree.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. What an inconsiderate neighbor, Dawn! One of my neighbors across the street is constantly dealing with folks allowing their dogs to poop in his front yard. He put a sign near the mailbox…they just make the next ‘deposit” a few feet past the sign. He keeps moving the sign. Despite several of us keeping an eye out for the offender, we have not caught them in the act. We all have dogs of our own – we know that this is not an occasional accident.

    Jeez Louise…tie a bag to the leash or put it in a pocket! When my nephews or brother in laws visit, they will usually take Gracie for a walk. A couple times Gracie made an unexpected deposit in the street or on a neighbors grass. After they brought Gracie back home, they rushed back out to pick up the mess. They did not want my neighbors to think that they were one of “those people.”

    Years ago I had a neighbor two doors down who used to walk her golden and consistently let it poop in my front yard. After the third time, my ex-husband put the poop in a brown paper lunch bag and marched over to her home and rang the front doorbell. He asked if she realized that she dropped something in our yard. She was totally clueless. She had no idea and actually opened the bag. The look on her face was priceless. We did not have issues after that.

    I am an old fart, too. There is nothing better than sitting with Gracie on our swing – watching nature in our backyard. You have a pretty yard. I hope you had some help spreading the mulch – that is a huge pile!

    I saw my first firefly last night. Summer is officially here! 😊


    • People are weird. Why would they continue to deposit when they KNOW your neighbor is not OK with it? ANyway…yes, my husband helped me and we got it all spread in a couple of days. But we were exhausted! Glad you saw the firefly. I haven’t seen any yet.


  14. I am an old fart too…I understand completely! 🙂


  15. Oh my, it’s happening to so many of us! I, too, admit old-farthood. I used to notice all my old fart family and friends used to carry on endlessly about squirrels, chipmunks and birds at the feeder. “How boring!” I thought. Except…guess what’s happening all the time to this old fart? (At least we’re not alone…)


  16. We have 2 neighbors both relatives and neither with dogs that get out and roam. The only poop here is from our dogs and that is mostly in the back yard. There are people here that put signs in their yards that say Your Dog Poops You Scoop. I kinda like it but have no use for it here my dogs refuse to pick up after themselves LMBO… We sit in the front sometimes, on the side sometimes but mainly in the backyard because the dogs are back there wanting us to play stick of fetch. I would not want someone else’s dogs pooping in my yard and I feel like if you need a sign use one. As far as being an old fart now sure when that comes into play but I am sure we are all old farts lol.


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