Two months into the season, and this is the springiest spring I can recall. Six months of especially wet fall and winter weather, although mild temperatures and no spectacular flooding or calamitous mudslides that I can think of, and now this: Wet and dry, a nice alternating pattern that, when looked at carefully, appears very spring-like. Things seem to be working, in other words.
This intermittency has made yard work actually sort of a pleasure this year. Of course, things are generally more pleasurable at the moment, having corrected (I assume) whatever chemical imbalance or deficiency I was inadvertently living with, having apparently decided that food was not all that important. Anyway. Talked enough about that. It’s much better.
So much better, in fact, that faced with a Saturday, with no alarms ringing anywhere in the house, I slept in. This is new; it used to be that once I woke, regardless of when or how long I’d been asleep, I was up. It’s been that way for years, but that was then and this is unconsciousness. I mean, it was almost 11 hours. I did a lot of physical labor and maybe it was that, or this sniffling and coughing that may be nothing or may be something else, but I’m not staying in bed because I want to avoid facing the world. I’m fine with the world these days. I just sleep more, or at least on some days.
And that’s good, I would say. But we were talking grass.
After one last mowing of the yard in November or early December, the battery in my electric lawnmower ran down, so I skipped a last pass over the back yard. Not a big deal.
But then February came, and March, and that battery just wouldn’t charge. I bought a new charger, which was inexpensive, and it did seem that the old one wasn’t working and this one was, but the charge wouldn’t hold and I got 20 minutes or so of stray power before kaput.
The battery is the thing, of course. And at over $300 for a new one, which had to be ordered from God knows where, with helpful but a little distant customer service, I just went and bought a new mower instead, for less than the price of the battery. It lasts less, but recharges in a couple of hours. I could probably do the entire lawn on one charge if it was just maintenance, or else do the front one day and the back the other. Not a problem.
Except during all this dilly-dallying about whether or not to buy a new battery or a new lawnmower, the grass still grew. Once I was fully equipped, the front wasn’t that big of a deal: A few passes over several days, bag, then mulch, then bag, etc., and we’re fine.
The back is where I’ve been wrestling, with one patch of grass at knee height by the time I started trying to attack it. This shouldn’t be possible, but with a combination of a line trimmer, occasionally some hedge trimmers (I was trying a lot of ideas), and just slow and steady, little bit at a time, helped by the weather to make it easier to do in sections, I got the rest of it yesterday. Not that it’s pretty, and there’s raking and more mowing and bagging, etc., still in store, but there’s a sense of accomplishment and some serious sleep at the end. I’ll take it.
None of this is important, except aesthetically. What’s important is I’m moving.
Otherwise, western Washington seems to be in good shape. Reservoirs are full, snowpack was normal, the lingering El Nino should give us plenty of warmth and sunshine this summer before we transition into another cycle, this one El Nina. And none of the weird political battles that seem to be going on in other parts of the country, radical legislatures and all sorts of alarm over bathrooms, are anywhere near.
Washington is sending the majority of its Democratic delegates as Bernie Sanders supporters, but other than the usual rallies and discussions, it all seems fairly calm. Bernie will come around, try to push the party left, and fight the Trumping of America. Hillary Clinton has been here before, in the equally rancorous nomination battle in 2008 (if you read back, particularly the comments, you’ll see the same sort of rhetoric; it’s kind of amazing). It’ll be OK, since the Democrats are definitely feeling Gryffindor facing off against Slytherin.
And there are plenty of Trump folks here, either enthusiastic or falling into line, but this is a done deal. Washington goes blue; no one will spend a lot of time here, from either campaign. That’s fine, too.
Me, I’m not so sure. Lots of resumes out there, no bites. And I’m applying for simple, clerical jobs, things I can do without thinking, just to bring in some money over the summer. I could do those jobs, although I admit to worrying about what kind of person I’d become. Maybe better. Maybe not. Not really a choice at this point.
For the time being, which I’m calling this rainy weekend, I’m considering my options open. I may watch the radar and attack some blackberry brambles. I might finally dig up a few areas of my lawn that need grass like they need…OK. They don’t need grass. None of this needs to be grass. Grass is just the default. This may be the year I scale that grass down to manageable, with bark and gravel and flower beds.
Or I’ll take the opportunity to deep clean the house as I can, mop and dust and do all those things that never seem appealing but won’t get done unless I do them.
And, again, the point is to keep moving. Sleep, check. Mood, check. Moving? Keep it up.
And keep my eyes on the prize. For a Muggle.