Last year, I kept running into my neighbor (one of the Gravel Barons) and his wife. They oozed....friendliness. Or their version of it. I was all the Polite Ice Queen (or my version of it). On one particular accidental meeting (I believe it was at the farm that sells the BEST SWEET CORN EVER), he says to me, "You know, Sue, if you ever need gravel, stone or anything like that, well you just tell me because I am your neighbor and I believe in being a good neighbor and I will just give you some out of friendship because I am a good neighbor and I want everyone in the local universe to know what a fine, outstanding fellow I am....Okay, I did add that last part. I thought I would call his bluff - "As a matter of fact, neighbor of mine, I DO need a BUNCH of gravel for my driveway and a big, BIG apron of stone." He only blinked a little and promised to stop by and take a look.
That was nearly a year ago. I sniggered snidely (redundant?) to myself every time his gravel truck drove past the house. "Oh, sure. FINE neighbor and all that rot." Or words to that effect. I will add here that, as a gravel baron goes, he always drives slowly past the house and sticks to the allowed hours.
A week ago, Saturday, a giant 4x4 flame red pickup with big black flames painted down the sides pulled into the driveway. Holey Cow, I thought. Who the heck is THIS? It was the Gravel Baron and Baroness. It was, turns out, the Baroness' truck. It is the local badge of royalty to have a bigger, better-painted, redder pickup than anyone else.
"We've come to see where you want the gravel, " he sez. I blink. Oh. So I let my arms sweep in a BIG wide movement and say, "I want everything covered in gravel." Not really. "I want all THIS covered in gravel."
There then ensued a conversation about types of stone and the need to put down a weed/grass barrier. Here it comes, I thought. The Baroness chips in, describing the correct cover and how to put it down. The Baron says they will have to dig up the sod. I'm starting to fidget.
"Git yerself a can of spray paint and paint where you want it to go," sez he. "I'll give you a couple of days' notice." And with that, they roar off.
I'm now starting to thaw at the thought of my new best ever neighbors. Then, two days ago, he rumbles (fast) past the house, kicking up a cloud of dust, a full half hour before allowed start time. Then, this morning, he does it again. I may be a paranoid nutcase, but I think HE thinks that I will not call him on it because he is going to dump a big pile of free stone on my driveway (and dig the sod, put down the weed barrier, smooth the stones...) I was highly agitated, as I felt that I had just sold my soul to the devil and was now between a pile of gravel and a hard place. Then I sucked it up, pulled up my BGPs and called him on it. Literally. No one answered, but I left a polite message to the effect that I was surprised to see him go so fast down the road at such an early hour, regulated starting times and all. I hoped there wasn't an emergency. I hoped he and the Baroness were okay. I bade him Have a Nice Day. It was downright treacly. We'll see if I can have my gravel and drive on it, too.