I have spent the past week whipping my summer place into shape.

Rear view of summer home

The deck and verandah took most of my attention.  A couple of gallons of stain posed no problem to transport  in my trunk.  There is a plastic liner there to protect the carpet .  Why do they put carpet in the trunk of a car anyway?  It seems to me they could line it with fibreglass.  It’s not as if I will l be transporting people in the trunk.  And if do become a psychopathic killer, I don’t think I will worry about my victims having carpet for their comfort. Well the liner helps anyway be it lumber or bodies.

The front verandah is looking happy with the freshly painted floor, rails and spindles. And it is sporting a new accessory.  A few years ago when I was in Florida, I spotted some colourful garden flags at a flea market.  There were many different pictures painted on them .  The one I chose has a trellis and climbing plants.  The colours are yellow, lime green, red , orange and some blue.  I unearthed this purchase just today when I cleaned out my front closet. I had tied a bag to the pole that I’d forgotten about.  In it was a holder for the flagpole.  In fact there were two holders.  One was broken; the wind again had cracked it in two. I have no idea why I had decided to keep it.  But the other holder was a good solid metal one that had a white plastic coating.  Out came the drill, bits, and screwdrivers.  Within minutes the holder was firmly screwed into the railing and the flag was briskly flapping in the wind.  Before I left to come back to my city house I decided to prolong the life of this holder . I removed the flag and brought it inside. I will fly only when I am there to rescue it should the winds of hell pay a visit while I am away.

The most exhausting part of my labour of love is mowing the grass.  My garden is not small.  In fact it is large enough that the former owners used a ride- on mower to cut the grass.  That was not for me.  I was determined to use my regular gas mower and I did for five years .  This was the same mower that did my lawn in the city in about twenty minutes.  What a time I had in the country pushing the poor little thing.  It took over three hours to get all the grass cut and every minute of that time involved pushing with all my strength .  It was a great workout for my calves and arm muscles.

However two years ago I found that it was getting more difficult to get the work done.   The reason was the weather was so bad during the summer that there weren’t enough days without rain to allow for the grass to dry. The labour was equivalent to making bricks from straw. Ask an Old Testament Israelite about that.  To make life a little easier I purchased a much more expensive , though not as expensive as a ride-on, machine.  This one had rear propulsion.  Well! You need to have horse riding skills to operate the thing; not because you ride it , but because you have to have the right touch .  I had no idea of the power of rear propulsion.  I pulled the chord to get it going, pressed the lever for the power wheels and off the thing flew.  I was running at full gallop not daring to let go of the handle bar.  The grass was spitting out through the side.  I whizzed by the fence headed towards the shed, whipped by the greenhouse barely missing a fallen piece of wood , yelling all the while.  I was on a treadmill that was roaring out of control. We headed down a slope .  I couldn’t keep up . The machine jerked away from me.

Then……….it stopped.

All I had needed to do was let go of the handle.

This week the lawn mower and I had no problems.  All went smoothly though it let out a grinding screech at one point when I hit the edge of a rock.  This rock is not one you can dig up.  Try digging that one up and you will unearth a mountain, part of the mantle of the earth that is covered with only a thin layer of soil to fool you into thinking you can have a garden.

And I used the bag for the cuttings which I emptied into my wheelbarrow and discarded down in the forest behind my place.  Twenty-five times I emptied that bag.  Maybe it was more.  My back aches , my legs ache,my body is covered with mosquito bites and redwood stain but I have a wonderful sense of accomplishment.

You see now when I look at my place I see I nicely groomed property except for the dilapidated  greenhouse.  That will be my project for the next visit.  .

So much mowing to be done!


4 responses »

  1. ada briem says:

    Great posting Judy. Put a few pictures of that lovely house on Facebook. Would love to see it. And forget the darn truck, try and find a little handy man that needs a bit of work. Will be a lot cheaper and save your poor hard worked body.

    • Next time I am there I will take a few photos. It is a very relaxing place to be however, I’d love to have the means to make some renovations. Maybe one of these days……
      Too bad you aren’t inclined to come for a visit. I’d love to have you.

  2. I can see you chasing that lawn mower Judy! I had a similar experience when I first moved to Cupids and Cecil was still in Ontario. I wanted to impress him by having the grass mowed when he arrived. I tried and tried to get the darn thing started but there wasn’t a gig. Finally, the little boy next door came over, asked me if I’d turned on the gas, reached down, and pushed a button. On went the lawn mower and I couldn’t move ….. I was speechless! Outdone by a child once again!

  3. Too funny! I can see you now, chasing the machine.

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