Fences are nice and they will cost you in more ways than one.
It is no secret that I am totally committed to my dog. The Queen and I have been together longer than any of the three primary relationships in my life (sorry guys). So, one of the big benefits of having a house and a slice of land is having a yard for The Queen.
Unfortunately, The Queen cannot be trusted off-leash. She minds well as long as there is not a squirrel, rabbit, mole, or groundhog involved or in the vicinity of the command. Because of her lack of impulse control around small furry creatures she can’t run free in the neighborhood (nevermind the leash law). Therefore, I had to buy a fence.
I called around – Home Depot, Menards, Lowe’s – and found the cheapest cedar picket fence at Lowe’s. They do free estimates and they install. Fine, works for me. Two days later a representative from the store (“Capt. Smooth” said in a sarcastic tone accompanied by an eye roll) contacts me and sets up an appointment to check out the property. On said day, Capt. Smooth calls an hour early to see if I can just “come on over” since he “came by to see a friend who lives in the neighborhood” and his buddy was not home. Um, no, I can’t leave work and additional hour early to accommodate your schedule, sir. I did however show up just after the appointed time to find that he had kindly waited in his car in my driveway – for over an hour. One walk-thru and measurement later and I had a price. Turns out approximately 215 linear feet of fence will cost you around $3,300. Ouch.
Not knowing of any other options, I called Capt. Smooth back to schedule the install. You can’t just schedule an install must another site visit with Capt. Smooth and the installer. Fine. I met Capt. Smooth and the installer at my new abode. The installer is a lovely guy who runs his company along with his son. He seemed genuinely interested in doing a good job and meeting my expectations. Unfortunately, he was not doing the pricing. At the end of this walk-thru and re-measurement the installer left and Capt. Smooth stayed behind to have me sign the contract. I am a lawyer, I get that, let’s read, sign, and get it over with.
No such luck. Capt. Smooth spent the next thirty minutes filling in five blanks on a form in between asking me where I “go out” in FW, making it clear that he drinks martinis, and telling me the long and sordid story of his baby-mama’s drug problems and incarceration (if this was a pick up line it is the worst I’ve heard). Lovely, this guy now knows where I live. All this for a fence.
So, Forty-five minutes later the contract was signed and I was able to escape unscathed from Capt. Smooth. So far, I have not had to encounter him again. I am thankful for the little things.
I did, however, go back to meet the installers when they marked the posts and they were great and fast. The fence was up in less than five days from the time of the installers first visit. I was bragging about my new fence at work. My audience was two fellows who work for a construction company. When I told them where I got my fence they literally bent over and laughed out loud. Not helpful. In construction circles having Lowe’s put in your fence is better than Home Depot but is still dumb. They always know someone who can do something. So, next time I need anything installed or worked on I am calling these two guys (this will be sufficient pay back for laughing at me)!
After recovering from the smack in the face brought on by my contractor-buddies’ laughter, I went and checked out my fence first hand. I love it. It’s fabulous. This was a little salve on my fence wounds.
The final step in the fencing process was to introduce The Queen to her new kingdom. I did and, well, she was mostly unimpressed. She walked around a bit, smelled, ate some grass, did her business, and promptly asked to go back inside. Sigh. She has never had a fenced in yard before, so I am going to chalk this up to inexperience. I am sure she will grow to love it as much as I do. And thank God I do. I am also thankful that my fence is pretty.