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  #41  
Old 14.03.2011, 13:35
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

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Stick a boldly printed sign on your letter box:

"Es war nicht mich. Stoppen Sie mich zu bedrängen, bitte!"

(It wasn't me. Please stop harassing me!)
Someone, please correct my bad German.
Let me help you out: Ich war es nicht. Hören Sie auf mich zu belästigen.

But I guess nobody would get that. Maybe better:

Die Kippen sind nicht von mir. Bitte hören Sie auf, sie in meinen Briefkasten zu werfen.
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  #42  
Old 14.03.2011, 14:21
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

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Stick a boldly printed sign on your letter box:

"Es war nicht ICH. Hoeren Sie auf mich zu bedrängen, bitte!"

(It wasn't me. Please stop harassing me!)
Someone, please correct my bad German.
Not perfect just betterBut keep up the good work
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  #43  
Old 14.03.2011, 14:28
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

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I regret to say but somebody of your neighbours is a coward and not able to state an error. Smoking from an apartment below DOES affect you above. It clearly IS a nuisance. I had smoking neighbours below, we have somking customers of our shop and of the coiffeur below. As soon as I find a solution I will NOT contact www.englishforum.ch but the Patent Office
A fan on your balcony ,wit a smoke detector
I want a cut from the Patent revenue
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  #44  
Old 14.03.2011, 14:48
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

I would post this on my letter box
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  #45  
Old 14.03.2011, 15:03
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

I can't really help with your situation, as I don't speak German... but I would say do something about it.

In the UK I lived in the bottom half of a maisonette. When I'd been there a year or so, I had new neighbours move in upstairs. I was ill at the time so didn't really get to know them. One other important thing: I had a cat.

They'd been living there about 4 months when I came home one day to find a bag of cat faeces on my front door step. I assumed that they'd been clearing out their flower bed (which had been in a right state) and forgotten to pick the bag up, so I disposed of it.

Couple of months later, another bag, this time hanging from my front door handle. This upset me a bit, but I was too intimidated to talk to them (plus still not being well), and I couldn't approach the land management company as I had no proof.

Few months further on, and I got a very threatening letter. The land management company had written to my neighbours (who had recently got a dog) and asked them to clear up their flowerbed from litter and dog's mess, telling them that if they didn't they might have to move. My neighbours sent me this letter, plus a letter of their own saying they had spoken to the land management company owners, and agreed that it was cat faeces, specifically MY cat faeces, and that I had to clear it up. So I rang the land management company owners and said a) is this true? b) why didn't you have the courtesy to write to me yourselves? c) you do realise that cats don't tend to foul outside their own front door, and d) I didn't mention it before but my neighbours have been leaving bags of cat faeces on my doorstep for nearly a year now and haven't once talked to me about this. Land management company said "Well, yes, you're probably right but we all have to get along, so please clean up the mess and don't make a fuss, there's a good girl. We know you're nice and quiet and don't cause problems... (implication being that my neighbours did and they were scared to tackle them).

So like a doormat I cleaned my neighbours flowerbeds. While I was doing it, the bloke came along. He didn't address the issue directly... but he did say that he'd seen a big ginger cat use the flowerbed the other day. I pointed out that my cat was tabby, and he admitted that it probably wasn't my cat at all.

So, problem solved...

Nope. Couple of months later, guess what I found on my doorstep? Yes, another little present.

Finally, they put concrete tiles down.

The REALLY annoying thing was, that all this time they were using the communal back garden (for a whole row of maisonettes) as a toilet for their dog. And I don't just mean wee either. They left the poor animal at home alone all day, I used to hear her crying for them, sometimes they'd come home and yell at her because she'd made a mess on the floor, they never took her for walks and then in the evening they'd take her out and let her do her business in the back garden. Where small kids played, and the rest of us hung out our washing. It was not pleasant trying to dodge the pile of dog's mess.

And what did the land management company do? They sent a really threatening letter to EVERYONE complaining about the mess. Even though they knew who had dogs.

So I'd do something about it now... and remember it's not only in Switzerland that neighbours do such nasty things.
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  #46  
Old 14.03.2011, 15:22
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

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..
So I'd do something about it now... and remember it's not only in Switzerland that neighbours do such nasty things.
Oh no, neighbors are funky everywhere, in fact I think I have had the most decent neighbors of all times here...

We had a neighbor, Mr. Donut in English, who used to wake up 5am just to steal our newspapers from our mailbox. There was no way to approach him, since there was no way to prove, no cameras, so my father figured he will get up slightly earlier than him for a week, and stick an old commie issue of newspaper there, instead. It was so fun to hear him swear so loud, when he got his 15yr old newspaper instead of brand new one...and he didn't have to steal, he had cash. The thrill of doing something bad pushes people into some weirdness.
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  #47  
Old 14.03.2011, 15:53
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

As smoke rises, the most obvious neighbour would be the one living in the flat above yours.

Right a formal letter to everyone, stating you asked them when you arrived if your smoking was a nuisance, them saying no, and what happened ever since. Tell them if it doesn't stop, then the only option is the police. Send a copy to the immobilien-agency.
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  #48  
Old 14.03.2011, 19:05
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

The letter is a great suggestion, but given the OP said he would prefer a more deferential tone because his/her neighbors are mostly older folks, I would go a bit more diplomatic at first and appeal to their moral high ground ("even though I am a smoker, I'm considerate of others about smoke and the littering bothers me as much as it bothers you," yada yada yada). There's always room to escalate later, but why go full-throttle when a disreet, polite note might nip the issue in the bud?

Wouldn't mention the authorites--actually the suggestion the OP do so really puzzles me, since I seem to keep reading threads where posters moan about neighbors calling the cops instead of handling disputes directly. Perhaps it's necessary in this particular case to go there, perhaps not--why not start a bit more subtly though? The OP is going to have to continue living (and, presumably, smoking) there, and in my experience cop visits go not good neighbors make.

I also wouldn't do it in "formal" German, I'd go as folksy as I can manage given these are neighbors and mostly older people. Happy to draft something for you in German if you like, OP.

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Write a letter in good, formal German, and stick it in everyone's mailbox. Say:
"I am not the one throwing cigarette butts on the ground. Please do not stick them in my mailbox. If you do not stop, I will have to bring this up with the authorities. Thank you."
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  #49  
Old 14.03.2011, 21:27
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

Try the note and at the same time, try to talk to the caretaker of the house (Abwart) if there is one, usually there should be one. And talk to the landlord. This could be case of "pick on foreigner" week or just some one who really thinks it's you and needs to get a talked to. This kind of behaviour is unacceptable and although calling the police is not necessary at this stage it might be when things escalate further. Remember, you are not the only one with a language problem - they don't speak yours either.
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  #50  
Old 17.03.2011, 15:12
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

Hi

I think, getting to know the swiss, you should start off with a note and stick it on the entrance door. This will get everyones attention then.

Here is what I would put in very formal german (or at least I think so)

Sehr geehrte Nachbarinnen und Nachbarn,

Ich bitte Sie hiermit höflichst keinen Müll mehr in meinen Briefkasten zu schmeissen. Mir ist selber aufgefallen, dass vermehrt Zigarettenstümmel auf den Boden liegen und mich ärgert dies auch. Ich kann Ihnen versichern, dass diese nicht von mir sind.

Das verstädnigen der Hausverwaltung ist sicher eine bessere Option anstatt mir, ungerechterweise, die Schuld zuzuschieben.

Ich bitte Sie, nochmals, hiermit höflichst, dieses Nachbarschafts unfreundliche Vorgehen zu stoppen.

Hochachtungsvoll

.............. (your name)

Hope that helps. If not, I would then notify the landlord or the agency for advice. I think the police is not a good option yet. I would use that as the last recource.

Good luck!
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  #51  
Old 17.03.2011, 15:18
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

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Hi

I think, getting to know the swiss, you should start off with a note and stick it on the entrance door. This will get everyones attention then.

Here is what I would put in very formal german (or at least I think so)

Sehr geehrte Nachbarinnen und Nachbarn,

Ich bitte Sie hiermit höflichst keinen Müll mehr in meinen Briefkasten zu schmeissen. Mir ist selber aufgefallen, dass vermehrt Zigarettenstümmel auf den Boden liegen und mich ärgert dies auch. Ich kann Ihnen versichern, dass diese nicht von mir sind.

Das verstädnigen der Hausverwaltung ist sicher eine bessere Option anstatt mir, ungerechterweise, die Schuld zuzuschieben.

Ich bitte Sie, nochmals, hiermit höflichst, dieses Nachbarschafts unfreundliche Vorgehen zu stoppen.

Hochachtungsvoll

.............. (your name)

Hope that helps. If not, I would then notify the landlord or the agency for advice. I think the police is not a good option yet. I would use that as the last recource.

Good luck!
....Sorry, forgot the english translation :

Dear Neighbours,

I, hereby, kindly ask you to stop throwing trash into my mailbox. I have noticed the cigarette butts that are lying around myself and do not like it. I can assure you, that it was not me.

It is probably a better idea to notify the property managmenent rather than blaming someone innocent

Again, I kindly ask you, to stop such un-neighbourly gestures.

Sincerely
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  #52  
Old 17.03.2011, 15:18
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

Or simply just light up a spliff instead.
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  #53  
Old 21.03.2011, 10:58
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

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Just put them in someone else's mailbox. Make a game of it. Eventually someone sane will raise the issue and you can reply "Yeah! In mine too! Outrageous, eh? Who do you think it is?"
The "game" can be endless. Im my old apartment, someone started to throw their "werbung" papers (adverts, local papers, etc) into the "eimer" (small trash can) by the door. Someone else decided this was not right, and began taking the papers out of the eimer and shoving them into peoples mailboxes. For some reason, they always seemed to end up in my mailbox (blame the foreigner maybe?). Since I assumed it was the one a-hole who lived in the building who was doing this, I began shoving them back into his box. Then he just automatically began shoving his adverts directly into my box. Then I'd shove them back into his. And then he'd shove them back into mine...and on it went for years. I guess it wasn't just me and him tho, as once every few months, someone else would dump a whole stack of adverts (that they were apparently angrily saving up) by the eimer. Then the hauswart would complain about that. The whole thing went on like this for years. It was rediculous. I'm from New York, there it's much simpler, you just shoot your neighbor and it's done. This tit-for-tat crap goes on for years


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presumably the cigarettes are not the same brand as yours, so i would include that in the note that i left on the notice board.
It's a game and they like to play it, plaing Columbo and pointing out logical facts won't get you too far. They are illogical people, logical facts don't register with them
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  #54  
Old 21.03.2011, 11:53
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

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Tape a can on your mail box with a note " For zigi butts "Including a"Happy face" A other good idea of mine "Quit Smoking"
haha reminded me of the ad campaign for the beer in my home country where they put the stickers "Drop your attitude here" on the garbage containers
on topic - I did always appreciate my Croatian-Italian-Portuegese neighbours but after reading this topic I kind of adore them, really. They so don't care about the neighbours...
I wonder how this story will end... Where do usually people who smoke - smoke? Indoors? I think if I could sniff the smoke from a neighbour I wouldn't be able to stand it... I'm allergic to it... Maybe the best solution would be also to change the location of the smoking exercise, in addition to the firm note...
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Old 21.03.2011, 11:55
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

Thanks for the responses. There have been no more incidents since. I am still sitting in a darkened room brooding
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Old 21.03.2011, 12:04
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

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There have been no more incidents since.
You sound like you think it's finished Someones probably just saving the butts up in a bag to dump them in your box all at once, or maybe sending them out for DNA ananlysis (not that it matters, they'll still blame you either way). Once this letter-box tit-for-tat thing starts it can't be stopped, at least in my experience.
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Old 21.03.2011, 12:13
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

What did you do in the end?
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Old 21.03.2011, 12:16
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

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You sound like you think it's finished Someones probably just saving the butts up in a bag to dump them in your box all at once, or maybe sending them out for DNA ananlysis (not that it matters, they'll still blame you either way). Once this letter-box tit-for-tat thing starts it can't be stopped, at least in my experience.
Great!

..
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Old 21.03.2011, 12:18
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

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What did you do in the end?
Nothing I don't know who it is. I think I will start giving all of them in the block dirty looks-that'll teach them
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Old 21.03.2011, 12:25
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Re: WWYD? Neighbours leaving me 'presents'

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Nothing I don't know who it is. I think I will start giving all of them in the block dirty looks-that'll teach them
On the bright side, 70% of Swiss rent and move every 2-3 years on average. So you could give it a couple of years and either you or they will be gone
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