Like multitudes of others, my husband and I were drawn to the beauty of WNC, left New England and purchased a home in what we thought was a small, quiet neighborhood in West Asheville. How things have changed!
In the past 15 years, compressors, Skil saws and trucks have been the soundtrack of our lives as house after house is constructed on every available building site. As more folks like us relocate to Asheville, there are now the additional sounds of lawn mowers, barking dogs, skateboards, basketballs and loud music. There is no quiet time. Ever.
I recently wrote a post on the East/West Asheville Nextdoor site, simply requesting that dog owners be more mindful of others when allowing their dogs to be outside barking. I was overwhelmed by the number of responses from those who are also troubled by excessive noise, and not just from dogs.
I understand there is little to be done about the exchange of real estate and would be hypocritical to complain, since here I am. I have nothing against dogs or children. And yes, there are noise ordinances and numbers to call for animal control. However, I believe that as neighbors, we should be able to resolve most of these issues among ourselves by using an old-fashioned, time-tested principle: common courtesy.
Dogs left outdoors usually bark because they want to be with their owners. Bring them in or join them. Lawns need to be cared for, but mowing could be done after breakfast and before dinner. Same with home projects that require hammers and power tools. Kids absolutely need to be outside and active but don’t need to scream to have fun. Retire the basketball at a reasonable time. Your neighbors will be grateful.
We don’t necessarily need threats of fines to learn to change our behavior. We just need to bring back the golden rule: Do unto others as you would want them to do unto you. It’s pretty simple.
— Donna Schutt