Battle over woman's wind chimes in Greenpoint

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Jim Dolan reports on a not-so-neighborly battle brewing in Brooklyn

The peaceful sounds of wind chimes that hang on a tree outside a house in Brooklyn are a tribute to a woman's mother who died last fall, but for her neighbors, they are apparently anything but peaceful.

Now, there's a not-very-neighborly battle in the small community of Greenpoint.

Owner Christine Balzac describes her reaction to her neighbors:
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Jim Dolan has the interview in a web extra.


"The wind chime is in memory of my mom," she said. "I got my first note last Friday."

It read: "Dear neighbors, the wind chime in front of your house is keeping us from sleeping, as well as being at home with open windows. We kindly ask you to move it to the inside of your house. It's highly appreciated, your neighbors."

Balzac was shocked.

"I felt like, really?" she said. "I was just mad at the fact that there are so many other things in New York City. If you are born and raised here, there are so many other things that you can complain about, the garbage trucks, the cars racing down the block, the gates slamming, my dogs barking. I thought that I was going to get a complaint letter about that. To get it about a wind chime, it blew my mind."

She decided to respond.

"When I got the note, I got upset, and I pinned it to the tree with a response," she said.

Her note read: "Dear neighbor. The wind chime is in memory for my mom who recently passed away. Get over it, you live in New York City. The kids on the block love it, and I've spoken to other neighbors. They don't mind it. Sorry, not sorry."

She admits the tone probably wasn't productive.

"I was a little passive aggressive with that," she said.

Then, she said another neighbor posted a note in support of her chimes.

"On Sunday, my tenant texted me and said, 'Did you see the new note taped to the fence?'" she said. "'It reminds me of home. Pleases don't remove it. Get a life or move next to the BQE.'"

She's decided that the chimes are staying, and she encouraged her neighbor to talk to her in person.

"They're for my mom, and once the weather gets warmer, I will be sitting outside on my stoop," she said. "So if that neighbor is passing by, feel free to stop by and say hello to me, and greet me the way a neighbor should greet me."

Related Topics:
newsnoise complaintGreenpointNew York City
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