Posted tagged ‘raking’

“Every leaf speaks bliss to me, fluttering from the autumn tree.”

November 14, 2016

Last night I slept on the couch. Gracie had an upset stomach, and I needed to be near the spider plants. I threw all the cushions on the floor, grabbed an afghan and tried to get comfortable. Gracie slept right through the night. Maddie did not howl. She slept on the chair, and because I was close, she too slept through the night. I was the only one who kept waking up.

Last night I kept going outside to see the moon. I didn’t want to miss it. I’m glad it was a warm night. Tonight I’ll do the same.

My television viewing has changed lately. I’ve been avoiding the news and have conquered my addiction for MSNBC. I’m watching mostly movies, mostly documentaries. Yesterday I watched documentaries about World War II. I watched the US leapfrog across the Pacific taking island after island from the Japanese. Now I’m watching December 7, a film by John Ford. It is Hawaii before, during and after the attack on Pearl Harbor. The battle scenes in all of these films have been difficult to watch. The deaths of the servicemen are real.

Today will be close to 60˚. It is not a day to be inside, not a day to be doing laundry. I think Gracie and I will take to the open road. I’ll open her window so if she gets the urge, she can stick her head outside. We’ll keep to 6A, a slower road, a pretty road filled with old captains’ houses and real trees lining the sides of the road. I never tire of 6A.

My neighbors were raking leaves yesterday. Both of them are in their late 70’s. He has Alzheimer’s. His job was to hold the bag for the leaves while his wife raked. I stopped to chat when I was leaving to go to the dump. He always says hi. When I got back home, they were gone from the yard, but there were still plenty of leaves to rake. I think there will always be leaves. They are the bane of fall.

“Leaves leave this world in beautiful fall colors and songs.”

November 5, 2016

I have returned. My computer is working just fine; Gracie is outside barking, and I am in a far better mood. I went to the ATM and got $100.00. I then got gas as the little gas pump had appeared, and finally, I went to a vintage/handicrafts fair. Now I have $10.00 and several bags. Spending money and buying presents were just what I needed to get me out of that funk. I bought Christmas presents and a few stocking stuffers. I still need bread and cream, maybe later.

Today was another lovely day. If I were a kid, I’d want to jump into a pile of leaves. It’s just that sort of day.

I remember the piles of leaves up and down the street on a Saturday afternoon. All the fathers raked on Saturdays as if it were a rule. My dad had a bamboo rake. I remember he had a pattern to his raking. He’d leave a few small piles here and there then join them into a giant pile he’d rake then sweep to the street. After that was the burning. I loved the smell of burning leaves, and I loved to watch them burn. First came smoke in the middle of the pile then they’d be a small flame. My dad watched and monitored the burning. He always warned us not to get too close, but we got as close as we dared. After the burning, I loved how my jacket always smelled like the smoke.

Turning the clock back means I get an extra hour of sleep, but then again I figure I am just getting the hour which was taken in March. I still don’t get the need for daylight saving time. It seems you can pick and choose which seems to complicate the whole time thing. Hawaii and most of Arizona don’t observe daylight savings (the exception is the Navajos, who do observe daylight saving time on tribal lands). Throw it out is my advice.

I wore a flannel shirt outside today, and I was plenty warm. I thought about adding a vest, but sometimes I live dangerously.

“You may have heard that back in the States there are some people who are smoking grass. I don’t know how you feel, but it’s sure easier than cutting the stuff. “

April 7, 2015

The sounds of spring fill the air: the songs of birds, the chattering of squirrels, aka the spawns of Satan, and the annoying hum of leaf blowers and saws. Yesterday the landscaper’s crew was at my house for several hours clearing between my house and the rental. The tree which had fallen this winter was sawed into manageable pieces, all the branches on the ground were cleared and the underbrush was cut. The wild space looks as clean as it ever has. My front yard too is cleared of debris as is the driveway area and the dividing space beside my house and Sebastian’s, my neighbor. Today the men were working at a house down the road. I could hear them long before I saw them.

My dad never bought a power mower. He used his old cutting mower. Every spring he’d bring it to the hardware store to have the blades sharpened. His only lawn was in front and between his house and the neighbor’s. He mowed that lawn every week. I used to sit on the front step and watch. He had a technique which never varied the whole of his life. He used a wide pattern to cut the grass and moved from one side of the lawn to the other slightly overlapping the cutting lines as he went. He always raked when he was finished. He always raked everything to the middle then picked it all up and put it in a leaf bag. I still love hearing the scratching sound of the rake.

My visual memory of my dad raking is a fall memory. He’s wearing a maroon jacket, one with a zipper that used to be his father’s. He constantly moves the rake. He starts on one side of the lawn and begins raking the grass which becomes a small pile. He keeps raking and moving that same pile, adding to it as he rakes. Finally the small pile becomes part of the big pile in the middle of the lawn. Every now and then my dad stopped to neaten the big pile before moving to another side of the lawn.

When my dad was done with his raking and the leaves were bagged, he’d put his rake and mower back into the cellar until the next week. His grass, raked and cleared of fall debris, always looked a bit beaten low to the ground and headed in one direction from the raking.

My dad was proud of his summer lawn. When I visited my parents during grass season, my dad would always ask if I had noticed how good his lawn looked. I always did and told him so. He’d just nod. That was always the answer he expected.