“A lawn is nature under totalitarian rule.”

Today was a break in routine, an out to breakfast morning. My friend and I decided to celebrate the Sox winning the game last night with breakfast. In the old days, I would have celebrated during the whole game and suffered for it this morning. I can remember going to work barely able to open my eyes and with a headache which made me think the top of my head had erupted. I was a whole lot younger then.

When I was in elementary school, my friend I walked to school together every day. She lived at the top of the hill facing the small rotary in the cul-de-sac. She lived on the same side of the duplex  where we once had lived. I remember that house really well. The kitchen was small, the spot for the table was by the window and there were only two bedrooms. The stairs were the best part as there was a small landing, and I used to arrange pillows and sit there and read. We moved from there when my sister was born as we needed more space. We moved down the hill to a bigger duplex apartment, one with three bedrooms.

They called where we lived the project. It was composed of wooden duplexes, either twelve or fourteen of them; I don’t remember which. We lived in the first set almost at the top of the hill. Ours was on a corner and angled to face the street. All the rest were square to the road. We had the biggest lawn in front which we shared with our neighbor. Their side of the duplex was the mirror image of ours. We also had a lawn on the side of the house which was sacred to my father. I remember it was always green and always well-trimmed. My father prided himself on his grass no matter where he lived. He swore by a hand lawn mower. He claimed it did the best job. I loved the sound of him mowing the lawn, the clicking of the blades as he moved up and down in the same pattern he always used. We weren’t ever allowed to mow the lawn. We didn’t follow the pattern right.

The cellar in that duplex was where we played a lot. The big toys were kept down there as were our bicycles in winter or summer rain. Next to the back wall was where the wringer washing machine stood next to a sink. Later on, my brother turned part of the cellar into his bedroom. He didn’t like rooming with my youngest sister. I understood that. One of the lures for our cooperation in moving down to the Cape was that he and I would each have our own bedroom. They were both on the first floor, and he used to sneak out his window late at night. I never did though I did sneak in a couple of times.

A few weeks ago my sister and I drove by our duplex. We both noticed how big the trees were but we especially noticed how awful the lawns looked, especially the one at our old house. My father would never have allowed that.

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12 Comments on ““A lawn is nature under totalitarian rule.””

  1. Hedley Says:

    and a well deserved win it was as well. As I said, if the blouses can get past Sanchez, Max and JV they truly deserve to go to the series.

    • katry Says:

      My Dear hedley,
      It was a hold my breath bottom of the ninth! I get today to recuperate!

      • Hedley Says:

        The mood here is, at best, melancholic. As you know the start time for tomorrow is to be determined by the outcome of the Cards-Dodgers dance this evening. Saturday night also brings the conclusion of “The White Queen” with the gang heading towards Bosworth Field for a bit of a showdown. Margaret rules (literally after the conclusion !)

      • katry Says:

        The mood here is still one of crossed fingers. They got by Max and JV the last time so we have hopes though I suppose serendipity did play a huge part.

        I hope the Dodgers win so we can play at 4. These 8:00 games are deadly. They end so late the Globe doesn’t even carry the score. You have to read the columns on line instead. The Cape Times seems to feature local field hockey, cross-country and football a bit more than they do the Sox.

        I’ll root for the Dodgers to even up the series!

  2. olof1 Says:

    Your father was right, those old lawnmowers are best for the grass. I have one I use when the grass is dry and short, it’s actually easier to use than my electric one that is rediculusly easy to use even if it has a cord.

    We never had a lawn where I lived but we had a huge one at our summer cottage but we tended to keep it towards the wild side 🙂 The grass never grew especially high there anyway since the soil was so poor and not even dandelions grew there 🙂 We had one dandelion that we spoiled so much that we most probably was the cause to why it died 🙂

    Sunny and cold here today and the entire country will have frost tonight. Winter is closing in now.

    Have a great day!

    • katry Says:

      I had one of those mowers when the lawn was tiny then one of my dogs dug it up and I didn’t need one. Now I have a huge lawn and a guy who cuts it!

      My backyard is on the wild side, but that’s Gracie territory so I keep it that way. In the spring it gets weed whacked then gets to grow all summer.

      Warm here today, close to 70˚ again. It did rain during the night as the street was still wet when I woke up.

      Have a great evening!

  3. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    My lawn is a disgrace now. Mostly I think it is because the lawn service I had last year cut it too short and it fried in the summer heat. This lawn service does not do that but the very dry summer was not good for it. It has never been watered or fed and has always recovered so I hope it will do so again.
    I have both a reel type push mower and a cordless electric mower. I love my cordless electric mower. It’s very quiet and very easy to use. The push mower was nice but it doesn’t work very well on my wild lawn. Too many green things in it are not grass.
    My father used a push mower, too, but he went to a tractor with a mower attachment as soon as he could afford one. Mowing was not his favorite thing.

    Today, I was intending to goof off. The dog slept late but eventually asked to go out so I took the opportunity to drop off the bag of clothes. Being on a roll, I went to the post office, the pet store and the grocery store.
    Now I’m going to goof off. The day is sunny and warm and I’m going to enjoy this one.
    Go Sox!
    Enjoy the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      My lawn is great because I have a wonderful landscaper and I put in an irrigation system when I had the lawn reseeded. Before that it was dirt compliments of Maggie.

      My father used to show off his lawn. When i’d go to visit, he’d ask if I noticed how great his lawn looked. I always made sure to look so I could tell him.

      I went to the dump, postponed from yesterday. I have a wash I brought down from upstairs but it is still sitting in the hall. I did polish a few things but that is it for the day.

      No Red Sox tonight so I get a chance to unclench my teeth.

      Have a great evening!!

  4. Coleen Burnett Says:

    Ah, the joy of mowing a lawn…NOT. Your memories of you dad bring back memories of mine…and his lawn mower. He had a gas-powered one, but I seem to recall he used a push mower for touch-ups.

    Many years later for economy’s sake I would end up mowing that same lawn myself. At almost a quarter of an acre (and two legs that try to do their job but usually fail miserably in the process) it was NOT something I liked to do…it had to be done in stages, and was usually a two or three day job. Your dad would probably either shoot me or laugh like crazy if he saw my effort…

    I am keeping one eye out for your Sox…go get ’em!

    Waving from Jersey…where I am content to watch others mow their lawns…


    • katry Says:

      Hi Coleen,
      The only power tool my dad used was a hand-held trimmer, an electrical one I gave him one year for Father’s Day. Before that he used one which resembled scissors. He did admit the new one was much easier.

      My dad was very particular about the way his cut lawn looked. We were all glad because we were, according to him, incompetent for lawn mowing so he always did it. Besides, he enjoyed mowing his grass.

      They may be on at 4 or 8 tomorrow all depending upon the results of the National League game tonight. If LA wins, the Sox will be on at 4. If the Cards win, they’ll be on at 8.

      Waving right back. I just write out the check to my landscaper!

  5. Bob Says:

    When I was a kid the lawn was my father’s pride and joy. He mowed it with a rotary power mower because the lot was too big for a hand mower. We had St. Augustine grass that grew better when cut with a rotary mower rather than a reel type. Every Saturday morning he mowed, edged and swept up the clippings from the edging. Between watering, fertilizing and mowing our lawn was a thick green carpet due to my father’s hard work. Several years ago I drove by my old family house and was surprised at the size of the trees in the front yard appalled at the condition of the lawn. It looked terrible.

    I hate doing yard work because I have a purple thumb. If I mow the lawn the grass will die. I have a nice mower in the garage that I never use and I have a lawn service keeping my yard from turning into a jungle.

    Let’s go Sox, the World Series and maybe the Red Birds are waiting for them to finish off the Tigers.

    • katry Says:

      You had the same reaction I did at my old house. The trees were shorter than I was when I lived there, and now they are taller than the roof, but there is no real lawn, just weeds and spaces with where there is just dirt. My father would think it horrifying. He used to cut my grass when he’d come to visit. He’d even tackle the back yard, a jungle.

      My lawn service does a great job. They fertilize at the right times and trim perfectly. My lawn looks great.

      The Red Birds are indeed waiting!

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