the gates of...

I have noticed that there seems to be a new trend on my road of putting big forbidding gates across the entrance to the driveway. I haven't seen this before, ever, outside of those weird subdivisions in Florida and on tv shows filmed in Beverly Hills. Certainly not in this little corner of the world. Ok, I've only noticed gates on two driveways - but that's a lot, considering that it's not a big road, that I've never seen it before, and that they both sprang up in the past couple of months.

What does this mean? Is there a danger lurking in my neighborhood that I'm not aware of? Are my neighbors just getting paranoid? Are the gates there to keep me out?? These happen to both be houses I've visited over the past few years, although I don't know the inhabitants well, or at all. I went to one as a favor to a friend who needed something dropped off - I don't even think anyone was home, and I think I left the package by the door. The other one was a similar nonevent.

It's curious and disturbing to see these unfriendly gates. One's a big tall chain link number and the other is a pretentious looking iron bar affair. I haven't tested them to see whether either is electrified or otherwise buttressed against all comers.

What is this world coming to?

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