I thought I'd continue Annette's theme from yesterday. I'm in the same frame of mind--it's hard to get much writing done when the outdoors is calling. In my case, however, the outdoors is not telling me to take a walk with my muse. It's more like it's yelling, "Hey, lazy butt! Get out here and clean out this flower bed!"
A little hard to ignore. Believe me, I tried.
So, I finally gave in and began the annual ritual called Yard Clean-Up. My husband got a head start this year. He decided some of the trees in the back yard were a little too tall. As in, if they fall in the wrong direction, they're taking out the sunroom and maybe part of the roof, too. He bought this nifty thing called a "high-limb chain saw." It's a chain with a rope on each end. You attach a weight to one end, and toss it over the branch you want to cut. At least that's the theory. Most times it lands on every branch except the one you want. When you finally snag the right limb, you just saw your little heart out and hope you run fast enough to keep the branch from landing on your head. I watched from the safety of the kitchen window with my finger on the speed dial for 911. Fortunately, there were no mishaps. And you'd never believe how many logs we got from just a few branches.
Anyway, I've been cleaning dead leaves out of shrubs, raking up the mulch, pulling grass out of the perennial beds (did you ever notice that grass will always grow where you don't want it to?) I even pruned my grape vines, much to the consternation of my Italian neighbor, Mario. "You're notta gonna get any grapes. In Italy, we pruna them in November." I wanted to tell him that the last time I checked, Pittsburgh ain't Italy. Instead I just smiled.
With the temperature in the 80s this week, it's hard to believe that only two months ago the back yard looked like this:
Here's what it looks like now:
And hopefully what it should look like in a couple more months: