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to be disappointed in my neighbours (snow)

(147 Posts)
NorthernLurker Sat 19-Jan-13 16:37:39

So we have some snow. Not all that much but enough to make the pavements etc tricky. First thing this morning I cleared the front of our drive and salted it so I could take dd1 to work. Then I came back, took other dds sledging and then cleared the pavement from our house up to the corner. I did this stretch because otherwise it never gets done and as that side faces North it takes an age to melt and makes getting out in the morning (I cycle) a bit scary grin Fine, that's my effort to put in, not a problem. I also gritted it with our own personal grit and it's pretty good now. However a whole fine, not too cold day has passed and NONE of my neighbours has cleared so much as an inch otherwise. A family round the corner have done their bit and somebody else has cleared their drive and that's it. AIBU to be a bit annoyed about this. I know who lives in all the houses on our street. They are all able bodied. Two of my neighbours have watched me clearing the stuff and done nothing. Not even asked if they can borrow my shovel. There are lot of kids on the street and they've been rampaging playing all over meaning that lumps of ice etc have got chucked or kicked (looked like kicked tbh) on to the cleared path - meaning it had to be brushed again. The parents have done nothing to prevent this.

AIBU to feel it's a shame everybody hasn't pitched in? It would have been so easy to do this morning before it got trampled. Now of course it's packed down. I thought maybe I should do a bit more but tbh I'm quite tired now.

PurpleStorm Sun 20-Jan-13 18:04:13

YANBU to find it annoying.

Most of our neighbours clear snow from their drives and the bit of road / pavement in front of their houses - it makes it so much easier and safer getting around.

Yes, fresh snow's nice and grippy, but only until people have walked on it and compacted it down, or until the top bits melted a little in the daytime and then iced up overnight. The bits of road and path that aren't cleared tend to turn lethally slippy after a day or two, until all the snow's gone, while bits that are kept cleared tend to be more or less okay.

Otherworld Sun 20-Jan-13 16:15:24

I'm with you Northern. My path is clear.
If we don't clear snow from the road and add salt it very quickly becomes impassable.

TunipTheVegedude Sun 20-Jan-13 15:06:50

I just wish there was consensus.
If everyone did it I could put ds in a buggy. If nobody did it I could put him on a sledge. The current situation of snowy bits interspersed with clear bits is really annoying.

NorthernLurker Sun 20-Jan-13 14:59:11

I do know - everybody was too cosy indoors grin

Goodwordguide Sun 20-Jan-13 14:57:32

You know, it just wouldn't occur to me to clear the pavements, ever! Nobody does it round here and I would say we're fairly community-minded, as it's a very friendly estate. Perhaps it's because we're in London and the pavements get a lot of foot traffic so the snow tends not to hang around.

I've always thought that the snow stops you slipping on the ice beneath but to be perfectly honest, I've never given it any great thought - I'm quite amazed by this thread, I assumed that snow falls, you wait for it to melt and that's it! Perhaps I'd better go and find the shovel.

Sirzy Sun 20-Jan-13 14:45:19

You don't know what is going on that day.

NorthernLurker Sun 20-Jan-13 14:43:19

Sirzy - I think you do tend to know a fair bit about your neighbours. For example I know that both my immediate neighbours are single people, work full time during the week and were at home yesterday. I exempt grin the people opposite us as I think she was working and he was at home with the baby. Next to them is a house of four able bodied persons though and so it goes on. There must be about 40 people living in the homes on our street. I don't believe that I am the only one able to clear snow.

digerd Sun 20-Jan-13 12:30:38

I saw a TV programme a few years ago, about the laws of having to brush the snow away from your front path in Germany. The unfair thing is that when you live in flats, it is the responsibility of the person on the ground floor. Which is usually the elderly. A young german man was interviewed, who said " My 86 year-old ground floor lady does it". When asked if he did not do it for her he said " Oh no, she does it so well and is proud she can do it".

tinyshinyanddon Sun 20-Jan-13 12:15:41

It's the law over here too - nasty letters from the city threatening withholding of services if snow not cleared from front pavement within 24h. Sounds awful but guess what? After it snows we all get our shovels and salt out and there is a lovely community spirit but not quite enough spirit to have my neighbors dh shovel for me (32 weeks with dc3)

PolterGoose Sun 20-Jan-13 12:05:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

OddBoots Sun 20-Jan-13 11:46:19

A little off topic but just a plee to put out some water and food (seeds, unsalted nuts, cubes of cheese, fat drained from meat) for the birds if you have the time, un-felined space, resources and health to do so.

diddl Sun 20-Jan-13 11:34:20

If you are able, why wouldn´t you clear the path to make it easier for others to get about?

SecondhandRose Sun 20-Jan-13 11:07:01

Clear the snow? Not when I have waited all year for it to get here.

Rocknrollnerd Sun 20-Jan-13 10:59:07

My experience when I lived in Germany was that it was very much a community thing. You generally did your own bit of the path etc (and it doesn't take long if you do it before everyone in town has walked on it all day) but equally you did your neighbour's if they were away/infirm/unable to - it works out equal in the long run as they will do yours the weekend you're away and it chucks it down with snow.

I think it's just a different mindset and one that most UK people don't tend to have. DH and I cleared approx 80m of path yesterday morning after the overnight snowfall - it took just under half an hour to clear all our path, all our terraced neighbours and the ones up to the houses. We didn't do it because we needed to walk on the path, we just did it because it's quick, easy and it helps everyone else. It's snowing again now and our paths are still clear, meanwhile pretty much every where else in town it's a lethal ice rink. Walking on fresh snow is a joy, but after a day of people walking on it, it isn't lovely crunchy powdery stuff, it's a hard packed stretch of ice.

Sirzy Sun 20-Jan-13 10:17:41

but really you dont know who could do what. I am housebound today with a poorly child therefore the fresh snow on the path will stay (unlessnext doors son is out and fancies so extra pennies)

My sister was working nights last night so I doubt her path will be done.

There are a whole host of reasons why people can't/won't clear paths.

NorthernLurker Sun 20-Jan-13 10:01:07

It's interesting to see how this has divided opinions.

Situation here this morning is that there was no more snow over night (though more forecast for later). The path I've cleared is completely dry and safe. The rest of the street pavements are shining in a somewhat ominous fashion.

Re children playing. I never said that I objected to children playing. Not really sure where people have got that from. I do object to said playing children running over other people's front gardens thereby kicking the heap of snow I have mercilessly inflicted on my own flower bed, all over the path I've just cleared of it.

The being busy/at work/enjoying snow thing - it's actually really quick to clear fresh snow if you have a big shovel. Stuff with ice underneath takes longer. That said my whole effort yesterday (with some fresh stuff and some iced stuff) took me no more than about 45 minutes. You do need a decent size shovel and good boots though - otherswise you'll be exhausted AND off to casualty yourself. I did the snow clearing AFTER we went sledging. Fun in the snow came first grin In the interests of giving all information I was parenting alone yesterday as dh was flying home from abroad. My youngest child is 5 though - and came to help me grin I appreciate it's harder to get out if you have a baby or toddler.

Yami - yes you do know me I expect grin As you can see the attempts not to feel resentful failed.......

There was a comment about not using a car. That was a bit odd - I don't drive on the pavement hmm

I'll freely hold my hands up and say that yes I am a bt judgey about the people who, like me, could have done something about the pvements yesterday. If the choice is between being judgy and having no sense of comunity effort then I will plump for judgey. Being judgey just means you think somebody should have done something differently. Are we really supposed to surrender our opinions and say anything goes? I think that would make you something of a doormat.

diddl Sun 20-Jan-13 09:47:31

Just found this about snow clearing in Germany.
(should anyone be interested!)

diddl Sun 20-Jan-13 09:32:40

I´m in Germany.

As far as I know they can´t force you.

It´s just a thing people do.

It´s possibly to make it easier for children to walk/bike to school.

And preferably before 8 as that´s when school & a lot of work starts.

Well if you finish at 4-that´s when you would do it!

It´s not that hard when you get used to it.

And because the majority do it, it´s worthwhile.

MousyMouse Sun 20-Jan-13 09:29:25

I have relatives in germany and they have quite strict guidelines about ckearing snow. each resident is responsible for the footpath in front of their house and the snow has to be cleared at certain times after snowfall starts. using salt is not permitted, just sand is to be used.
if you are at work or on holiday you either have arrangements with the neighbours or a contract with a company that does it for you.

Piffpaffpoff Sun 20-Jan-13 09:22:27

YANBU. However, I'm finding with each subsequent fall of snow more and more in our street are doing it each time do there's hope yet! We live at the top of a hill and me and my neighbours have always cleared 'our' bit but getting up here is still a problem. However, yesterday there were a few folk out clearing further down the hill which was helpful.

TreadOnTheCracks Sun 20-Jan-13 09:18:24


We live in a lane with 9 houses, four house holds came out yesterday and cleared the whole road. 2 houses have infirm people living in them.

Dancergirl Sun 20-Jan-13 09:16:30

Where do you live diddl? Are you in the UK? It's just not realistic for some people to clear their pavement before 8am and unless everyone does it, there's not much point is there? You would be limited to only walking where it's been cleared and that might not be very far!

MidniteScribbler Sun 20-Jan-13 09:16:09

How can thy force you to do it diddl? What if you start work really early? Or didn't finish a shift until 4am? Or are sick, disabled or caring for children? Besides any of that, they could get stuffed if they think I'm going out in the snow before 8am to shovel snow on a footpath I'm not even going to be using. If they want it cleared, they should pay people to do it properly..

diddl Sun 20-Jan-13 09:15:54

I don´t think that people who can´t do it are being judged. When I see an uncleared bit, I know it´s often an elderly person for example.

But tbh I do feelhmm at those who have gone off to work, thereby leaving it for the whole day.

MadderHat Sun 20-Jan-13 09:14:45

We're the only people on our street who have cleared our drive and the pavement in front of our garden and drive... I did the clearing onto our front lawn while my DH and DS(4) and DD(2) made snowmen with the snow I cleared. Without that extra snow, we wouldn't have had enough for a snow baby!

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