RIP MowerJune 14, 2010
My friend Esther has this in the front yard of the house she's currently renting. HAHAHAHA. Seriously, if I had this in my front yard, I would laugh every time I came home.
Instead, we have grass. I hate that grass. In our familial division of labor, it has fallen to us that Lala does most of the work in the back yard (BUT I DO THE TOMATOES I LOVE THE TOMATOES DON'T TOUCH THE TOMATOES) and I do the front yard.
Well, we have a gardener now. Or gardeners, rather.
I never thought we would. I thought we'd kill the lawn somehow and put in veggie beds or desert/native plants (we live in a hot zone of Oakland), or that I'd just keep mowing it with the gas-powered lawn mower I bought four years ago on Craigslist. It was the worst mower in the world and always took more than a hundred pulls to get it started, but it worked once it was running.
Then the mower died. And wonderful, perfect, best-of-all neighbor Sam moved (we are still in mourning). After the mower gave up, Sam would have pity on us every once in a while and do the front yard for us. We gave him huge hugs in return, which weren't enough, but it was all we could think of (besides giving his tinkering son our spare screws and loose bolts -- Sakai loved making things). But after his family left, the grass just got higher and higher until the tallest weeds springing from the evil bermuda grass reached past my waist. I wish I was kidding, but I'm not.
One day last month, I lost it. I drove around my neighborhood, looking for gardeners. When I found a team working nearby, I asked them to come over. They did the work in about fifteen minutes, mowing, trimming the edges, cutting back the camellia bushes, and weeding the flower beds (without pulling up the flowers). The loveliness of it all almost made me cry.
So now we are People With Gardeners. I never thought I'd say that. (Now, People With Housecleaners, YES. I'm living for the day we can afford that. I would hire a person to come in every day and scoop the litter, I swear to God. I hate that chore so much.)
But it's so nice to come home to. Nicer, I think, than that mower above, but I'm not sure, because that is HYSTERICAL.
And in the back, I've ripped up my square-foot garden and put in tomatoes and basil and some squashes and beets. This is what it looked like earlier this month:
That foxglove and those greens were taller than I was. A rainy winter and some sun made them shoot right up. I can't believe how well plants do in those little short boxes. Lala has done a ton in the yard -- you should see the glass bricks she liberated from her father and made into a border. I'll show those another day.
Gardening. I like it. I should do more of it, in fact. (We need salad greens! Note to self to plant some!)