And then the rains came

Sandi McBride

August 29, 2013

I think I may have told you that we purchased nearly 5 acres of land that adjoins us a few months ago. At the time it was one of those things that I was for and upon which Mac dragged his feet. I had already made an offer a year ago on one parcel and was turned down. Then the land didn’t sell and didn’t sell and the owners came back with an offer on both parcels that I felt we couldn’t or shouldn’t turn down.

Still Mac looked over the acreage and only saw grass that would need cutting. Since the bushhog had been through it, it didn’t look all that bad to me. So I began to harangue and cajole and plead. He of course had a different name for what I was doing and after we bought both parcels, he began calling it my hissy fit land. Therefore, it is now Hissy Fit Acres. At the time, as I mentioned, the bushhog had been through and the place looked pretty good. We immediately began caring for the plum trees and peach trees, hired a young man to clear out the trash and and pure garbage that the renters had left and prepared for a proper mowing.

And then the rains came. They came for days. They came for weeks. Our one mower could not keep up with mowing nearly 5 acres of grass. I thanked God for the three acres in woods. We didn’t need to mow that. As soon as we had two dry days forecast, we would begin mowing. Or should I say Mac began mowing. Our big mower would absolutely not start with me perched atop the seat. Not even if I bounced up and down to try to trigger it, it just refused. Mac got on and off it went.

So we had (yes we, not just me) this brilliant idea to buy a bigger mower. We found a 52 inch cut Cub Cadet and had it delivered to the house. While the rain that lasted six days was going on, Mac read the handbook for the lawn tractor. It even has cruise control. Now, Mac will not use cruise control on the truck so I have no reason to believe he will use it on the Cub. Finally able to actually mow grass with it (it stopped raining for a few minutes) off he set. He got more than half of the highway frontage land mowed but back where we are at the house … well those three acres of grass continued to grow as it didn’t get a look in before the rain started again. Now we had time to read the instructions for the triple bag grass catcher that we had bought for the machine. What fresh hell was this?

So Mac has the book on the bagging system in hand and off he goes. After about an hour I hadn’t heard anything out of him and went to check on him. He was sitting on the ground with the instruction manual in hand and a look of exasperation on his face. They don’t send instructions for these things in Greek … it just seems like Greek I went to Catholic schools most of my life until we moved to Ruby, and had taken over two years of Latin. The instructions for putting this thing onto the mower was every bit as difficult as trying to take a second year Latin exam with only two weeks of classroom exposure. The pictures of the parts and where they go looked as though they had been drawn by a not terribly bright five year old, and slots a b and c was not part of the equation.

We have been working on it for over a week. We are nearly there. I figure that as long as it doesn’t rain for a bit we may have the thing assembled and put on the back of the mower by the end of the month … all we have to do now is get the mower deck back on. And perhaps salute it with a stiff drink.

— Sandi McBride is a resident of Jefferson, who blogs regularly and enjoys her garden and her furry and feathered friends. She is a wife and mother of two sons.