When we first moved to this house in 2011 we were told that an old gent acted as a vigilante deterrent, as are very common in the streets of the BA suburbs and we agreed to pay the communal fee, albeit against my better judgement. True to form and when we had maybe slipped and paid late, he began to harass Adri for money, at which point I warned him never to ask her again. I also withdrew from the scheme as we were clearly subsidising a vagrant, who we soon learned was actually living in the guardia hut and did nothing all day except shout with his mates, cough up phlegm and spit in the street constantly and invite all his mates to noisy get-togethers at all hours, within no more than five meters from our front door.
The neighbours used him as a slave to fetch and carry and to do odd jobs, whilst I spent an inordinate amount of time telling him to shut the fuck up, which he then complained about to the rest of the neighbours, who then came out on his side. One even did the El Ingles angle, much to my amusement. Needless to say, we don't have very friendly neighbours, not one of whom came over to say hello when we first moved in.
It's also worth pointing out that any incident that took place, including my mother in law being mugged right outside our front door and a woman having her bike stolen at gunpoint, sent him running back to his hut with his tail between his legs.
Fast forward to July 2017 and the old man was taken ill and collected by his family never to return, which sent the neighbours into a tailspin; they no longer had anyone to fetch and carry for them, not to mention the false sense of phony security they seemed to garner from this bizarre situation, so they grouped together and invested in halogen spotlights and alarms, with everyone having their own panic button. With the street already lit up like a Christmas tree, the horrendous new lights gave the street a prison camp look and I objected to the whole fiasco, but they went ahead anyway.
Fortunately I had an ally and he reported the whole thing to the local council and had them disconnect one of the systems on a lamp post directly in front of his bedroom. The sirens go off regularly and are ear splitting.
Some weeks after we got back from the UK last July, they hired what appeared to be a proper security guard in full uniform, very affable and professional. In other words he was avisible deterrent.
I know violent crime is a problem here, so I didn't object this time and we subscribed. A couple of months later he disappeared because one of the neighbours took a dislike to him because he wouldn't fetch and carry for them and a few days later a new bloke arrived who is so fat he can barely walk, invites all his mates over to the hut (sound familiar?), has his kids over shouting and screaming and lolls around on an easy chair in Bermuda shorts, which is a sight I still can't erase from my memory. He also brought back the shouting from previous years as if everything requires to be shouted at maximum volume day and night. You almost feel these people in your fucking house, so I've again had to go out and tell them to shut the fuck up (in Spanish). This has dragged on for months, I've withdrawn our payments which the neighbours incredibly decided to increase recently to $1500 a month and we're back to square one with this overweight man who has no desire to deter anything, changing his shift to nights, where he sleeps until dawn.
Last night was the final straw, when I woken by him at four this morning, not three meters from our bedroom window shouting into a cellphone and giving directions to some people who were lost. And I mean shouting.
I have to say that I did lose my rag when I approached him in the hut and told him he should just go and never come come back.
The neighbours have a Whatsapp group of which I'm not a member (Adri is), so yet again I'm waiting for the jungle drums to drone on again. Frankly, these neighbours baffle me, since paying for a waste of time and something that simply doesn't exist, but is the opposite of what it is intended for, seems like utter madness to me.
This is one of the main reasons we have to move house, amongst others.
Rant over...for now.