Tuesday, June 27, 2000
This might have been the most productive morning I've had in months. I felt so guilty about Suzanne mowing and whacking my backyard that I worked twice as hard as I would on a normal Tuesday. (I'm pretty sure she did, too.) What an awful job. She brought her heavy-duty trimmer, ran out of string. Used my lightweight trimmer, ran out of string. Ran home to get her hedge trimmer and electric lawnmower. I was no help at all. It's a one-person job, and I was tied to the phone and fax, as I am every morning during the week.
Now that the weeds are down, I have to find a way to keep them under control. Killing them would seem to be the best option to begin, but I'm looking for a long range plan. I'd though heavy plastic and bark would be an inexpensive answer, but when I mentioned this to the Boss, he turned purple (over the phone, even).
Bark was too hard to keep clean, and anywhere the plastic was exposed it would warp and crack, he told me. Besides, the plastic would hold water that would damage the bark over time. He wants me to use rock, either gravel, or some kind of ornamental composition. His recommendation is to go to a reputable nursery and talk to the oldest person working there, and get their ideas.
Well, I'm willing to listen to almost any ideas. I'm already trying to arrange for a gardener who works for many of the people in Mom's mobile home park to come by next week and give me his thoughts on what can be done. I want a yard that is presentable, but more importantly, one that is easy to take care of. I never want to be waist deep in weeds again, if I can help it.
Since I moved in here at Green Acres, there has been a little red Mazda sitting in the common gravel area of the driveway. It belonged to the former tenant here, and it didn't move until today. Apparently she found out that the best way to get rid of it was to sell it to the kid next door. His first car.
He's not old enough to drive, so he and his dad spent the day rolling it back and forth across the lot, tuning the engine, repairing and tightening things. Then, since the kid can't drive, he spent the afternoon — and I mean the whole afternoon — sitting in his new car, revving the engine and playing the stereo at full volume. Windows open, hood open, maximum impact.
Spare me from high-spirited children with new toys. When the Boss called and asked why I was so distracted, I described the situation to him. He wanted their phone number, so he could call and tell them to cram the racket. Or words to that effect. I told him I would handle it, if it came to that. I'm hoping it doesn't, but I could really use a little more serenity during the work day.
Usually I'm not an old grump. Most of the time, the sound of kids having fun is music to my ears. But I couldn't help wishing Junior would run out of gas, or that his car would. Hopefully he'll get bored with sitting in a non-moving vehicle some time before I end up in a room with padded walls.
Padded walls. Hmmm. Sounds quiet, restful. Nice.
(And I'm just the neighbor!)
I always have a reason, but I always stay up later than planned. As determined as I was at the beginning of the week to be consistent in getting to bed earlier, something has happened every night to thwart my best efforts. Last night, for example, there was a rain delay in the Giants game in Denver. Well, that's important. They scored five runs to tie the game in the top of the third, and then the game was suspended for an hour and a half. What was I going to do, stop watching? I don't think so.
And then, I spent an extra hour or so trying to get eGroups to send a message to my beloved notify list (all ten of you). It never did go out until I tried again this morning, but that's not my point.
What was my point?
Oh, yes, I'm not getting enough sleep. I'm wearing down early in the day. I'm becoming an old grump who hates kids and can't cope with a little noise.
This whole thing of getting up earlier is backfiring, because it depends on getting to bed earlier, and no matter how hard I try, it just never seems to happen. I just can't bring myself to shut down at the end of the day, if there's anything left I think I have to do. But I'll keep trying, till I either come up with a better way or collapse.