Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Gate Etiquette

One of the first rules of country life you need to learn regards gate etiquette. Ranchers rely on gates to prevent cows or horses from getting out onto a road and hitting a car (dangerous for driver and animal alike as you can imagine), to separate females from males in breeding season to prevent unwanted pregnancies (why can't we do this in public schools?!), and to manage pastures, among other things.

So the rule you need to know is:

Leave it like you found it.

In other words, if you drive up and the gate is closed and locked, close and lock it after you pass through. If it's open, leave it open once you're through. If it's latched but not locked, you guessed it, leave it that way.

Which brings me to an incident involving the driver of a large cement truck and our front gate, pictured here after the meeting. Due to an error in spatial judgement, he trashed the gate right off the hinges and twisted it beyond recognition. This would be a good example of NOT following proper gate etiquette, because the gate sure didn't look like that when he drove up.


Jimmy said...

I hope you got in that little truck of yours, drove right up to that big ol' cement truck and gave that driver a good talking to!

Denise said...

Jeff, are you sure Mom wasn't anywhere near that gate? I've seen that woman take out all the poles at the Baton Rouge Airport, another time she took out a red pole with a white Ford and there are various other dented items along the roads she's traveled. She even took out a pole at the repair shop when she took her car in to be fixed when she hit another pole. But I love that woman with all my heart and soul!

Jeff Hebert said...

Jimmy, I looked him right in the eyes and said "HMMPH!" and then I turned around and walked off!

Annie'sBuddie said...

So have you hung the mutilated gate in your house as a piece of custom art work?
That's what we did with the cooker we kept at Bu's Bocage before we lived there. It was a cute little red thing that we grilled hamburgers or steaks on while we sat in the woods drinking wine & trying to come up with an appropriate name for our place.
One night after we were back at our rent house about 20 miles away, I woke up about 2AM freaky about fire. So we drove back up to be sure the woods weren't burning. Everything was OK but there were still some embers glowing so I insisted that we put it in the back of my SUV. Bouncing back out to the road it promptly turned over & began smouldering & melting the carpet.
Next time out we dug a hole to set it down in so it wouldn't be sitting on grass & the ashes could fall safely onto the gumbo which couldn't burn if you put a torch to it.
That was great until the night that I miscalculated where the pit was & drove over it mashing the little cooker & leaving a big tire print across the lid. Made it kind of look like a smiling red clam with a tattoo.
It lived the rest of its days proudly displayed on top of my grandmother's upright piano in the tavern that we used to own. Probably the only piece of modern art to ever appear that far north in Montgomery County!