Have you ever watched The Pioneer Woman on the Food Channel?
At the beginning of every show, Ree Drummond tells us, “Here’s what’s happening on the ranch today” and it always proves to be something that necessitates the preparation of several fabulous beefy, buttery, or sugary dishes wherein calories or fat content are not a consideration.
Shortly after our youngest daughter got me hooked on the show, I read an article in The NYT about the editor of one of the glossy women’s magazines being so inspired by The Pioneer Woman that she quit her job and moved her family from New York to an English farm in her husband’s family. I’ve never hankered to live someplace that it’s best not to name the farm critters and I’m perfectly content to answer, “Not much” when anyone asks me what is going on at the Lee house. But perhaps I should bring out the butter because much has been happening around here in the past two weeks or so.
Dearly Beloved decided, after more than a dozen years of having someone else handle our lawn maintenance, that he wanted to do it himself. He broke the news to the lawn guy and then the fun was on. While Ree refers to her husband as “the Marlboro man,” mine is the anti-shopping man, so he planned to do it all without setting foot inside a store.
First he ordered a tiller/edger/whatever. He was ecstatic when it arrived, and assembled it that same day so that he could till and over-seed all the thin spots in the lawn. He wanted to be ready for his next internet purchase, a lawn mower.
We don’t have a large yard, so nothing fancy was needed, but still, I would have thought he’d have looked for something in the key-starter, self-propelled direction. Oh no, he wanted one that would be “manly exercise.” Not that I’m opposed to that, but it does mean that if he breaks an ankle or gets the flu or something, the grass will have to wait because The Little Woman won’t be stepping up to the rope starter pull.
A few days after he ordered it, I said, “There’s a UPS truck. Maybe it’s your lawnmower.”
He scoffed. “That baby won’t be coming in a dinky UPS truck. It’ll be arriving in a SEMI!”
While waiting, he contented himself with buying a chainsaw and, of course, watching the grass grow. His manly mower finally arrived, not in an 18-wheeler, but still something larger than a UPS truck. Oh, the joy…!
Said joy was short-lived when he began assembling it and found that one of the wheels had been damaged in transit. He called the factory and they promised to send out a replacement wheel that same day.
That wasn’t fast enough. . . he got out the duct tape.
The new one arrived Wednesday, but so did the rain. He hasn’t been able to try it out yet with all four wheels, but he’s handling it well. All this rain is sure to give him more to mow.
When he started looking into chainsaws, he mentioned that he’d better get a gas-powered mower because sometimes it was unsafe to be climbing trees with an electric one.
I called the tree-triming folks yesterday. They wanted to know was it an emergency.
“The sky is blue so we know where to stop mowing.” – Harold Stone