Yesterday I drove down a local road that I haven’t used in a while.
As a kid, I used to walk that road at dusk. It was a great place for bats. There was one stretch that was thick with them, and I loved watching their aerial acrobatics as they chased insects.
The last time I drove that road, the bats were still there. I caught glimpses of them as I drove.
It’s a quiet rural road that doesn’t carry that much traffic. There has never been any accident there that I know of. I have never heard of anyone being killed or even injured.
It now has street lights along it. Why? I don’t know. So much for the bats.
There are quite a few new houses there too.
I don’t know what the houses are like because they are all surrounded by high stone walls. Of course they also have high gates that are electronically controlled. At least one of the houses I passed had masts at each corner of the garden with security cameras on. There must have been at least four cameras, covering the outside and inside of the wall.
Who are these people?
They move to a very scenic part of the countryside, presumably to enjoy the peace and tranquillity of country life and then they build prisons to live in.
I have lived here for a long time. The boundary of my property is fenced, but that is purely to keep the dog from wandering onto the road. It is easy to climb over the fence. My front gate is an ordinary gate that anyone can enter. I don’t believe in living in a house where my friends and neighbours have to stand in the road waiting for me to press a button. I don’t think people should be humiliated and forced to talk into a metal grille while standing in the rain.
Many’s the time I have gone to sleep leaving the garage door wide open. I have slept while the front door was wide open. I occasionally forget to lock the back door or lock the car.
In all the time I have been here, there was one attempted break-in. They got as far as damaging a window, before Sandy scared them off.
So what the fuck are all these security cameras for?
What is going on in the heads of these people that they are so paranoid?
Are the gates and cameras there to deter or to impress? I suspect the latter.
An aspect of Irish society that I despise is the need for ostentation. Are we so insecure that we have to shout about our status from the rooftops?
Ireland is now awash with SUVs being driven by people bedecked in Armani and Gucci. Electronic gates that used to be the preserve of embassies and the like and now all over the place. The tiny cottage across the lane from me now has electronic gates that would rival those in Wheatfield Prison.
What the hell has happened to us?
Thank God for the recession.
ah, would you look at that – the first comment!!!
Grandad, count yourself lucky, not many a place where you can head off and leave the door open. For me, there’s no point in owning anything valuable, folks’ll just want to steal it and you’ll have to pay to have big security crap to protect it. Though yeah, I dont get the big gates for the heck of it either.
Forgot to ask yesterday, how’s Sandy getting on with the gp?
Charmed – Someone has to be first!! I can understand security when there is a need for it. There are some areas of the cities where I put a padlock on my pocket. In the middle of rural Ireland though, it’s just an expression of wealth.
Sandy thinks the GP is a puppy and gave it a great wash yesterday. Her nose is a little bit out of joint though, as she is afraid she may no longer be #1.
I dare you to go and see if they have anti- handgrenade devices.
They’re asking for it.
Mind you, it could be Enya’s new gaff?
K8 – I’ll try lobbing a few mortars. We’ll see how the cameras cope with them.
That Enya just won’t stop following me around……
You should loiter around the outside of the biggest one in black and balaclava with the Mission Impossible theme tune blaring out of some speakers and when they ask you what you’re up to, say:
“Delta bravo alpha dog, needs to borrow cup of sugar, over”
Maxi – Classic! 😆
I love country living.
Once I was stranded at home for five days because I couldn’t find my car keys. Eventually I found them in the ignition of the car, unlocked in the drive. Good thing I was happy enough staying home.
My security system is a dog with a big bark. He’s only saying, ‘I WANNA BONIO!’ but nobody else knows that.
Susan – I have left my keys overnight in the ignition too. Our Sandy is a Bonioholic too, and her bark usually means “will you be my friend?” There are exceptions though – tourists, scruffs, burglers and anyone I dislike.
The world is full of people who think they are better than ‘normal folk’ – what they don’t understand is their high walls and locked gates only increases their paranoia to the point where they can’t speak to or even look at ‘us commoners’ – their loss!!!
Kate – That’s why I go around jamming their gates.
There is a few of them around my way, range rovers , big gates, and they think they blend in by having hundreds of pheasants ran onto their shotguns.The world is full of plonkers, your right bring on the recession ,I’ve nothing to lose anyway.
Ya think the recession will change em? They’ll sit in their secure houses counting their money and congratulating themselves on their acumen while the rest of the county wails.
I imagine the burglar’s have walked through out place, eyeballed all four dodgy cars all with keys in their ignition, taken a look around and decided to go down the road to the nice big house with the electronic gate and security cameras because they have to be protecting something valuable when clearly I’m not. I have two dogs . . . neither would wake up if there was a removal truck pulling up outside!
Thrifty – And where are they keeping their money? Shares? Heh! Investment portfolios? Ha Ha! The banks – not worth much. Property? Hmmmm? I’d say a lot of them have suffered.
Baino – I always said that if someone did break in here, they’d take pity on us, tidy the place and leave us some decent stuff.
Oh, they might be much less well off, but they are still better off than I, and much better connected. Until the gaffs you describe are being re-posessed they’re doing OK.
Thrifty – The majority of the ones I know are miserable bastards. I can guarantee that you may be financially poorer, but you are a lot happier.
Give it about a week. That’s all these fuckers have left.
I grew up in town where you locked the front door to let people know you were not home, and left the back door open in case some needed to get it. We always left the key in the car in case one of them had to be moved. When visiting my dad would get mad because I not took the keys out, I actually locked the car.
By contrast while living in Miami my wifes car was broken into while she was attending mass. They did about 5 times as much damage to the car as they got from the items they stole.
I know we’re pretty rural up here, but none of us lock our doors and still wander in and out of each others’ places. It’s one of the things that I love about living here. Mind you, there’s a couple of newly built big, flash ivory towers with electric gates. They’re sitting empty with for sale signs outside, though. Shame….
lots of stuff, security, paranoia, one-upmanship, what does it all get you? Not a damn thing except more of the same and a boat-load of health problems and your kids hate you for no reason. Growing up poor and Catholic meant macaroni and cheese on Friday, confession on Saturday, mass on Sunday and nuns and school again on Monday and all was right with the world. You played outside with your friends, you used your imagination to the fullest and pretended to fly like superman, built forts and made pretend farts with your arm pits. No locked doors and families watching out for one anothers kids. Lots of stuff is no guarantee of anything except maybe anxiety about wanting more and getting less, the poor bastards with the security eye in the sky will never “see” the comet coming until it is too late.
John O – You have just described my youth perfectly [I’m still not too fond of macaroni cheese]. As for The Others – The only reason I go on about them is that they are ruining the countryside with their forts. I swear if I ever won the lottery, I’d give most of it away!