I have a confession to make. I mow our lawn. . every week. . . Every single week during Kyla's nap time I set up little Jimmy with a DVD from the library, and I head out to our garage to crank up the large riding commercial mower. It's very convenient for me because there's no cord to pull or anything; you just turn the key, and off you go. There's also no real chair on the thing, and I'm not really sure why; it's more just the space where the seat would go, but there's no actual cushioned seat. And then there's me balanced on top of a fleece (for cushioning) on top of the seat space. The thing is ginormous, and I've never been certain of what exactly to do with my legs while sitting up on this sort of pedestal. Should I sit with them tucked near my rump to give added stability, or should I stretch them out on top of the deck to make the super-sized mower look a little less obtuse with me driving it? Usually I opt to stretch them out and hang on for dear life.
A slight issue developed for me yesterday though when our neighbors were having their tree (near our side of their property) cut down. As I backed out of the garage on the John Deere and observed the large leafy part of their tree laying in the grass over our yard and our neighbors' yard, I could hear the sound of chainsaws hacking the tree into pieces from somewhere deep within the foliage (why they cut down the whole tree as opposed to just trimming it is completely beyond me and a whole 'nother story in itself. . ). Had the tree cutting people been out and readily apparent there's a good chance I would've just ditched the mowing for the week, but given that they were obscured and totally invisible to me I decided I'd just go for it and cut the yard. You see, while I enjoy cutting the yard, and it makes me feel productive, and I like getting to tout my accomplishment to Jim when he gets home (something that he should feel just amazing appreciation for - similar to the way a dad is supposed to feel upon arriving home to see the piece of stupendous coloring their child eagerly presents for them as a gift), I know I kind of look like an idiot, and I'd rather just not do it when there's a lot of people nearby to bear witness to my yard production.
So not seeing any gawkers from the neighbors' yard, I persisted. I got the whole front yard mowed, and had just gotten about a quarter of the way into the back yard, when I was pretty sure the tree people from next door might be observing my mowing skills in the back yard. Now the back yard is kind of tricky. There's lots of big holes which the dogs have dug for seemingly no reason whatsoever aside from to practice war maneuvers. LOTS. And given that I'm on a schedi what with Kyla's nap being somewhat limited, I feel the need to cut the yard quickly. Thus, I was traveling at about mach VII while hitting the ditches in the yard and literally getting air under my hiney from the whole thing, when I noticed the tree crew not just observing the mowing event haphazardly, but actually leaning over our fence and affectionately hugging on our 'guard dogs' (who were also doing their darndest to hang over the fence for the TLC session) while looking quizzically in my general direction.
Ya, it was a moment of horror and shame. I'm not exaggerating even in the least about the joltage from hitting these overgrown ditches while mowing at lightning speed. There's no seat belt on the mower (which I guess is a given since there's no real seat) and my butt literally gets a good, modest 6 inches (I'd say 12 incautiously) of air while cutting the backyard. The problem with this is that I'm hanging onto the speed and direction controls while I'm flying all over the place, and I think I inadvertently sort of lean into the controls while hanging on for dear life thus giving me even more speed. Ya, I know it would be really funny to watch. I know I'd get a good laugh out of it myself; but that's just it, I want to be able to laugh at it maniacally before anyone else does. After that, I'll be fine.
Once realizing I was the comic relief for the tree trimmers, I then had to decide whether to slow it down some and risk not completing the job (gasp!) or just keep going at mach VII so as to hurry through with the embarrassment and get done before Kyla woke up. In the end, I decided on a sort of middle ground; it wasn't mach VII anymore - maybe mach III.
I was more than happy to be done with the yard mowing yesterday and pulling the John Deere into the garage. Kyla was still asleep when I got inside, and I even had time to shower (!!!!). I've already decided that for next week, I'm going to strategically place a recording camera in the backyard to capture the horror of it all. Then, once I've gotten a good laugh out of it all, I think I'll be fine with the world observing my skills.