Our fence debacle

This summer I am working four 10-hour days a week (Monday-Thursday). I didn’t really think it would be that different from my regular work schedule, except that it most definitely is. The bonus is that I only have to actually GO to work on Mondays, and I work from home the rest of the week. I will say that the past 6-7 days have been VERY interesting around here.

Last Thursday I spent the day at a job fair hoping to find some new talent to recruit/hire for my program (I am an instruction and curriculum specialist for online learning in my school district). Instead, I spent the day hanging out with my boss and 2 of our teachers…and I read a book. Yep, not very productive. We were supposed to be getting a new white vinyl fence installed that day, but he didn’t show up and didn’t call until later in the day to say, “First thing tomorrow morning”. Ok. Friday, I am off. My husband works nights and worked Thursday night so he slept until about noon. Still nobody here. Later that afternoon, the owner shows up in flip flops with an empty truck just to tell us he wasn’t going to install the fence that day, but “First thing tomorrow morning”, and the reason: Friday was his brother’s birthday (this will be important later). Well Saturday was our Chuck E. Cheese birthday party for our now 4 year-old from 10:00-noon as well as a bowling party for our now 15 year-old that night.

Ok Saturday morning we wake up at 8 and wait…and wait…and call…and call. At 9:30, we are told they are on their way right now. Great. Just Freakin’ Great. So, I take the kids and go to Chuck E. Cheese while my husband stays home (NOT going to HIS 4 YEAR OLD SON’S birthday party) to wait for them. At 11:00, they still aren’t there, so my husband comes to the party for all of 5 minutes just to be able to thank the guests that came and brought their kids. He tells me they should be at the house any minute and leaves. We get home from the party at 12:15 with pictures, leftover cake, and stories to find my husband still waiting. WTF?!!!

The truck pulls in at 1:00. That’s right ONE o’clock…with just ONE person (the owner’s brother…you remember, the one who had a birthday on Friday). He tells us he is just dropping off the materials and not installing it that day either because the crew didn’t show up. Are. You. Kidding. Me?! I thought we were going to have a murder on our hands. We call the owner who assures us it IS being installed that day and about an hour later, this guy pulls up in a van. I send him around to the back, he is there about 15 minutes, and he leaves. The brother informs us that this guy had never installed a fence before, so he sent him away. He also tells us that he will be installing our fence on Monday, and he will get started at 7AM “First thing”. My husband goes out to look at the materials and sees that we were brought 8 foot sections instead of the 6 foot sections we ordered. He calls the owner again. The owner tells us that they were out of the 6 foot sections, so he got 8 foot sections but is installing a metal support beam in the bottom to prevent the sagging we were concerned about. Ummmmm what? You changed our order without even ASKING us?! I should also mention at this point that my husband is the one that actually got the permit to be approved since this guy didn’t even apply for it when he told us he did, and my husband is the one who called for the underground lines to be marked since, once again, the guy never bothered.

Monday rolls around, and sure enough, at 7AM, the brother is there to install the fence…alone. *sigh* I actually have a staff retreat for work, so I leave at 7:15 to the sounds of him working. My husband had to leave at 3:00 to go to work. I get home at 4:30ish to find the fence…not done (not too surprised since he worked on it BY HIMSELF). *more sighing*. Apparently, he ran out of materials and had to stop for the day. This is after he borrowed a knife and was looking for something else (can’t remember now what it was) to borrow/use. Tuesday, yesterday, he shows up around 8AM and gets to work. Sometime around noon I guess, the owner shows up. They only had the gates left at that point, which they custom make on site. Great. The little one on the left side goes up no problem along with all of the caps on that side and the back. The double gate on the left…not so much. The owner comes to get my husband around 1:00 to show him the progress. He asks about the caps on the front right side since he didn’t want to have to trim something to put on the caps we wanted and wanted to replace them with other caps (they are supposed to be slightly different than the ones on the left in order to match our neighbor’s fence on that side). My husband informs him they are going to install the correct cap that we originally asked for, and he asks them when the inspection is going to be scheduled. The owner tells us an inspection “isn’t necessary”, to which my husband informs him it most definitely is necessary. At that point, they tell us they need to go to a different job, will schedule the inspection, and we can “settle up” after that. And they leave. I go out to mow the yard (which had been put off thanks to their shenanigans), and I find extra pieces of fence, hardware, a fence cap, a metal pipe, a metal rod, and piles of dirt where they dug the holes. The double gate on the right does not have a support beam in the middle like we talked, and it sags (hence the need for the support).

I honestly don’t know how people like this stay in business. I will be absolutely SHOCKED if a) they schedule an inspection and b) it actually PASSES inspection. I would be pleasantly suprised if they came back and put on the freakin’ caps they are supposed to on the right, inserted the support for the double gate, and cleaned up their mess. That’s clearly asking too much based on past behavior. In the meantime, we have done our due diligence in warning everyone in our neighborhood and anyone else for that matter NOT to hire this company. I will say that the brother is one heck of a hard-worker, but the owner is a liar and a moron with little integrity.

In other news, I am weigh 151.8 this morning (yep hit a plateau), and I got to actually go in and talk briefly to a Navy active duty officer recruiter. The reserves officer recruiter was in class but is supposed to call me this week. So…Navy huh? It wasn’t where I started out thinking, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. We will see.


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