Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Landmark / Feedback from Monday's meeting

Thank you to the Landmark for their ongoing coverage.

I've been wrestling with this issue about my "good neighbors".

Neither neighbor on either side has ever said a word to me on this topic or any other, yet had plenty to say in front of the community. THAT breaks my heart.

When anyone takes a stand on an issue, no matter if it's positive or negative, there will always be negative people who want to tear them down. That can't be the thing that stops progress.

We have company in our yard all the time. The Landmark reporter and photographer stood right next to the coop. Most people didn't even notice the chickens until we pointed them out in the back corner.

The smell issue came in when we had problems with mud earlier in the season directly resulting from downspouts dumping into the dirt & gravel alley and puddling in our yard. We just could not get the back section of our yard to dry out. We couldn't walk to our gate or garage, so I stupidly thought that some straw or hay would help remedy the situation, which turned out to smell very bad. $200 in pea gravel later, we've raised the grade enough to help, but not fix it. Once the hay was removed and the pea gravel put down, the smell was gone. I admit that I thought for a bit that it might be the coop as well, but that was dismissed immediately when I cleaned the coop and the smell was still there.

I've lived many places all over the country, but never experienced the kind of "good neighbors" I've experienced at my current address. Sadly, the rest of the community is witnessing only one moment in a year's worth of living at my current address. Ongoing rude and hostile hasn't been fun. I learned after moving in that our neighbors have reputations which predate our move there. We've just tried to ignore them and enjoy our lives and good friends.

Thankfully we all witnessed what the rest of the town's citizens are like on Monday night. There was a great showing of intelligent, well-informed, articulate, compassionate people who know that this is a good thing for Brookfield. It was exciting to see and moving to hear their speeches. Most of the other concerns can be addressed by referencing the available data. It would be interesting to see if a workshop with an educated professional would be well-received.

Moving forward, it's probably best that I step back since the backyard hens discussion shouldn't be about me, hostile neighbors, or any one individual. It should be about the entire Village of Brookfield taking one more step toward being the most progressive, green, environmentally friendly community in Illinois.

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