Kiwiyarns Knits

A blog about New Zealand yarns, knitting and life

The value of peace


Some of you will remember that there was a period when I lived on a rural property.  For varying unhappy reasons, I had to leave that property and move back into the urban jungle.  My fondest wish is to one day be able to move back to a rural environment, and call it home.  Forever.  I will plant a forest around my home, and live miles from the road.  It will be wonderful.

I loved the peace.  I loved the quiet.  By quiet, I mean no machinery or vehicle noise.  No hum of industry, no whoosh of cars, no noisy parties, no second-hand music… there was plenty of animal noise, but that was fine.  At night, you could hear the moreporks (NZ owl) and petrels calling.  Sometimes the sheep, cows and horses had a party at night, and it was quite amusing to hear them carrying on.  It was a Spring thing. You would know if someone came calling because the chickens would tell you.  I loved it.

I am not sure if it was just that I was feeling relaxed and happy there, or whether it was the stimulation of the natural environment I was in, or maybe both factors, but this was also the most creative time for me.  Designs came to mind all the time. It was easy and natural to come up with new concepts for knitting.

Since moving into this urban place, things have been different, and more and more, I appreciate the value of peace.

I’m feeling a little over-excited today because I’ve just endured four hours of loud drilling from the neighbour from hell.  Even though it’s illegal to perform construction activities on a Sunday, and even though I called the council about the noise and the activity twice today (over those four hours), nothing has been done.  Talk about a bloody toothless law (or maybe the Wellington City Council just cannot be bothered to take action about this sort of thing??  If it’s illegal surely there must be action that can be taken?  I have photographic proof.)  And when I confronted the neighbour about it?  He just laughed in my face like I was an idiot.  It makes my blood boil.  He’s just declared war with that action.

This situation has been going on for nearly a year now.  I was very unfortunate that the neighbour put his house on the market at the same time as I moved in to this place.  And the new owners decided that the garden was not good enough, put a chainsaw through the entire garden (literally), including a beautiful, large tree in the backyard.  NOW he’s doing earthworks.  From a technical point of view, I’m fine with the activity during working hours and on Saturday, when it is reasonable to expect people to do noisy work.  But regularly on a Sunday and in the evenings after 7pm?  My friends, that is going way too far.  The disrespect and selfishness of this couple is indescribable.

Perhaps I might have to move.  Again.  But I’d rather not have to do that.

Peace.  It exists on so many levels.  On the grand scale, it’s when war between nations does not exist.  On the smallest, personal scale, it’s the happy and balanced state of the individual.  On every level, it is critical to the health and well being of people and society.  It’s just a pity that it’s becoming harder and harder to find in today’s world.

Will I find the peace I crave so much?  I hope so.  In the meantime, it’s increasingly hard to find the mental space to create.

What would you do if you were in my shoes?


Author: kiwiyarns

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19 thoughts on “The value of peace

  1. I understand your frustration. We too gave up rural living about 10 years ago…not what we wanted to do but needed to do…and have missed it ever since. We’re constantly amazed at how rude neighbors can be….all night parties, yelling in the middle of the night, kids being allowed to go out past 10 to play, yell and scream, etc. We even had a neighbor behind us that for close to a year had a dog that would bark non stop for most of the day and night. No one would do anything about it. Luckily, they finally moved. Good luck with your situation. I hope they finish their projects VERY soon. Or, better yet, that you (and us) can move back to rural settings sooner than later.

  2. Coincidentally, we are also contending with noisy neighbors, but out near our country home. We live in the “peaceful” Upper Peninsula of Michigan USA. We moved up here in 2003 upon my husband’s retirement from the big city of Chicago. We live on a beautiful big river. Fast forward to last year when a farmer down the road decided to use his big empty field right across from our house for a racing track. In the winter on the river ice people bring their snow machines & motorcycles & race on the ice track. Fine, that’s a half-mile away. We hear the droning, but it’s not horrible on the week-ends. Then last year this farmer grooms a half-mile racing track onto the 16-acre parcel & held races every week-end, morning to 11pm from January to March. So we took him to court because the local zoning ordinances just do not allow such a use on any classification of land in the township. We did win. It took a year. Our celebration was short – about 2 weeks worth – before he put a sign up yesterday on the stockade fence – UP Hog Farms.The people around here vilified us for opposing the ice racing track. I guess we’re in for yet another fight. We will be looking for a country property – this time at the end of a long road. We’re getting tired of people. Good luck to you in your fight or on your next move.

  3. O dear… I feel for you… It is absolutely horrible to be in the middle of so much noise all day.. ! And to have neighbours who are so rude doesn’t make things easier either..
    I mysekf am currently in no position to move to a rural area, but what I did is treat myself to customized earplugs to wear at night. They cost me app. € 90, but wil last about a lifetime and does make tucking in early way easier in summertime. Guess one can just as well wear them during the day, too. It doesn’t block áll the noise, but muffles the sounds to a bearable level… Maybe that could be some kind of temporary solution untill you can move back to a rural area ? Good luck !

  4. Go to the city council in person and complain that no action was taken from your phone calls. Explain this has been an ongoing situation, and check who you need to make a formal written complaint to about their lack of support.

    Check with citizens advice as to what legal steps you can take, and discuss at what point you are allowed to call the police. Indeed find out who you can report him to and the next time you have to speak with him, list them and contact them.

    The minute he starts on a Sunday, ask him to stop and explain you are calling noise control if he continues. Call them every hour after that as well.

    Speak with your other neighbours, they probably feel the same. Give them a number to call and an address to write to with their concerns. The more people who complain, the better.

  5. As long as you have neighbors, there are going to be ones that are awful. It’s too bad you can’t call the police on them. One of the towns I lived in had a noise ordinance similar to yours and you could call in complaints. (Or is that what the Wellington City Council is for?) The town was pretty small, so the police would usually show up quickly and tell off whoever was making the disturbance. A second complaint would earn the noise-maker a fine.

  6. Good luck with going to the WCC in person…Just wondering the large tree he disposed of..was it a native…cause in Auckland that would get you into hot water, more so than the noise….

  7. We were out in Maraetai ( A beautiful beach south east of auckland away from the hub bub of the city) and had the very fortunate chance to see Orca whales quite close to the beach, there were a couple of adults and a baby. It was such a lovely occasion but it was completely ruined by the people around us! There was a couple of noisy boats who didn’t leave the poor whales alone and followed them like a disrespectful tailgater right up there poor old rear ends until they left the area. On top of that were the Jet ski’s that were roaring up and down the beach – so dangerous and annoying- it just completely ruined the experience for us. I don’t know why the council doesn’t have designated jet ski lanes very far away from the beach it makes my blood boil!

    Good luck with the neighbours. If the council does not do anything about it – Start saving!! – Shifting is stressful but the time to shift compared is nothing once you’re out of there 🙂

  8. Good neighbours are a truly rare thing these days. Are the police an option for the Sunday noise? In my town, if the council has received an noise complaint, and acted upon it, the police can be called outside of council hours if the noise/nuisance starts up.

    Our neighbour moved 2½ years ago to go travelling. He rents his house out, and the tenants (she is mid 50’s, he is mid 40’s) are dreadful. They have a large dog which has not been properly trained or socialised. It would growl and push at the paling fence between our houses, and push paling’s off. This would happen any time we were in the yard working, hanging out washing etc.

    When I tried to discuss the dog’s aggressive behaviour, the male tenant shrugged and said the dog ‘is just doing his job, I guess’. I was gob smacked by this. I contacted the real estate to discuss the matter. This only made the matter worse. The tenants were told by the agent that I am ‘just a troublemaking b*@%!#’. I was told to ignore the dog when it barks and growls at me, which it still does, but now we have a new colourbond fence in place.

  9. I know I was more relaxed and therefore creative when I was living in the country. It’s just nicer out there.

  10. on the plus side, I hear that misery is very good for the writing of poetry and blues music!
    Seriously, bad neighbours are a pain in the arse and hard to sort out because you have to live next to them every day. I agree with some of the previous commenters about bugging the WCC. As with many other things, persistant nagging will probably force them to take action just to get you to stop.

  11. Oh dear that doesn’t sound pleasant at all! I know its a real pain in the butt but I would move. I have found that you generally cant change other peoples behaviour but you can change your own…. not what you wanted to hear, sorry. I hope for your sake they move out soon xx