The Mowing Game

Apologies to a couple of faithful followers who visited my blog three years ago and are still hanging in there, please forgive the repeat. This re-blogged post is meant to buy me some time to get out and take more pictures. Our weather has been less than pleasant so I’m desperate for new photos. Here is a true story from some time ago:

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When I emailed to my friend that I had to go out and mow, she thought I was using the riding mower, so she wrote:

“It’s so funny knowing what you’re doing right now—mowing. I can just see you, sitting on this wonderful vehicle, speeding through your yard, pedal to the metal and hair straight back. Right?”

I wrote back to her:

“No such luck. I had to mow the part of the back yard that has fruit trees and shrubs growing here and there, the parts the riding mower can’t reach, and so it was grunt and shove with the power mower.”

At one point I was backing up, pulling the mower, and I tripped over a stick I had pounded into the ground beside a small apple tree. The stick was meant to protect the tree from getting rubbed if I dragged the hose around the garden.

So I’m lying there flat on my back, my nose crinkling at the stench—oh God, I missed the nearest pile of doggie doo by only a couple of feet—and I have to hold onto the handle or the lever will shut off the mower.

I could get up easily enough, and continue mowing, but this mutt comes over to lick my face and bat at me with her paws. Ruby thinks this is a new game where I roll on the ground and she wrestles with me. I push her away with one hand while the other arm is stretched full out holding onto the mower lever. The more I push Ruby away, the better she likes it. Still on my back, I now have a dog tussling game in full swing.

I’m at a disadvantage because I do not want “doo” on me. I could let the lever go, but I’d rather the mower didn’t shut off. It’s a miserable old sonofagun, a bitch to start, and I’m just too lazy to pull the cord repeatedly and fight with the machine.

Meanwhile, I’m thankful for the many shrubs around our yard, so the neighbours don’t see the old lady flat on her back losing the wrestling match with her springer spaniel.

In the end, I have to let go of the lever. As Ruby stops pouncing long enough to figure out why it’s suddenly so quiet, I find my feet and pull myself up. As I brush the grass clippings off my clothes I hear giggling from the neighbour’s yard.

“Hi, Anneli,” calls a child’s voice. I look over to the fence and see the grinning eight-year-old boy from next door.

23 thoughts on “The Mowing Game

  1. What a story to tell for the kid next door…. and how wonderful you share it with us, for those that missed it first time round… I can get the picture in my mind and have had a good laugh at you prone with the dog thinking this is some kind of new game… lovely…

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    • Ruby was a holy terror in those days. Everything was a game to her, so I couldn’t really get mad at her, but I really didn’t need that wrestling match while holding onto the lawnmower handle. Funny, in hindsight.

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  2. It’s a wonderful tale. Doggie enthusiasm can be quite something to behold, especially when they’re sure it’s playtime. As for repeating posts – no need ever to apologize for that, especially for the enjoyable ones. After all, don’t we listen to the same music from time to time, or watch a favorite movie year after year? Not only that, I’ve often found that when I re-read a book I find things I’ve never seen before. And would I say, “Oh, no chocolate ice cream for me. I’ve already had that.” No way!

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