Every spring, the snow melts, the critters shake their fur out and the few neighbors I have crawl out of who knows where. It isn’t always clear if they simply hibernated in their homes or if they spent actual time in a cave because suddenly, they are just ‘there’. So begins the stirrings that eventually leads to the “breaking out of the lawnmowers”. I put that in italics because it actually becomes an event worthy of its own local holiday. The grass isn’t quite long enough to focus on altering it in any shape or form, but no one wants to be caught with their gardening shears down. To not be prepared is tantamount to public shaming without words necessarily being uttered…at least not in front of you.
Shortly after the initial burst to prepare the equipment comes the first precipitation that is not in a frozen form. It sparks a reaction that spreads like a bad case of shingles, but the kind that would be communicable in an airborne manner (thank goodness ‘experts’ say that cannot happen). The itch must be scratched and as soon as the clock hits eight a.m., the approved time per city code to start making as much racket as you can, the varied bleating and babbling of mowers, large and small, fills the air in cacophony. If you listen closely, you may be able to identify which mower has revved up first based on the sonic vibrations, muffler reverb and overall tenor as the two-cycle engines pump fuel and oil through their innards.
There are times that I welcome this rite of the seasons. First, I often feel like the small town I live in turns into sub-arctic Alaska minus the bears during the winter months. When the only vehicle moving is the snow plow, you are thankful the road is cleared but wonder if you have been outright abandoned. Second, once the mowers come out, you know that you will at least witness another human being, even if it is just a brief glance out of the corner of your eye.
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