By Jody Fuller
A couple of weeks ago, I was lying in bed when I suddenly remembered.
It was a Sunday. Earlier in the day, while cutting the grass, I remembered one of the commandments of my granddaddy, the patriarch of the Washburn side of the family; thou shalt not cut grass on Sunday. I should have followed that commandment.
I have a really small yard and don’t have a lot of grass to cut, but it still takes me two days to get the job done. In reality, it only takes me about a half-hour to cut everything, but I prefer to spread the fun out over a couple of days. To get to my back yard, I have to push the lawnmower through about 50 feet of pea gravel, and I just don’t have time for that. It’s hard to push anything in gravel. There are stepping stones along the way, but the rambunctious and playful activity of the dogs keep them submerged in the gravel, so they don’t do me a lot of good.
I didn’t necessarily want to cut the grass on Sunday but a mowing was overdue, and I knew the rain was coming. It wasn’t long overdue but overdue nonetheless. It’s not as if I had a Dodge Dart hiding in the weeds. It just needed cutting. Tall grass brings on snakes, and tall, wet grass brings out the skeeters. It also makes it more difficult to pick up the dogs’ business.
Now that the warm weather is here, I’m spending ample amounts of time in the backyard handling my garden, so I like the yard to be nice and tidy. This year, I have six different types of peppers and four different types of tomatoes. I also have okra, eggplant, and red potatoes. Oh, did I mention I planted 60 green bean plants? I used some beans I’d grown and saved from last year’s garden. They are all growing at an alarming rate. Fee-fi-fo-fum, family and friends, come get you some. Perhaps they are magic beans.
When I finished the strenuous 15-minute task of cutting the back yard, I started pushing the lawnmower back to the garage, but when I approached the sea of pea gravel, it looked as if the distance had doubled. I just didn’t feel like pushing through, so I left the mower on the side of the house with the intent of getting it into the garage before dark. That was the intent, but I forgot about it.
That evening, the rain began to fall. I love the rain. I love its smell. I love its sound. I love what it does for my garden, and with all those green beans, I’m going to need an occasional monsoon.
A little later, the thunder and lightning ensued. The rain was pouring. I was lying in bed when I suddenly remembered. The darn lawnmower was still on the edge of the pea gravel on the side of the house. Momentarily, I considered forgetting that I’d remembered but quickly forgot about that. I got up in the middle of the monsoon, put on my Crocs, and pulled it back around the house onto the back porch. That pea gravel is just too much, but without it, the side yard turns into a swamp on rainy days and nights.
Granddaddy likely got a chuckle out of the whole episode. I know I did. I’m sure he looked down on me shaking his head with a smile, which is fine with me, because I still look up to him. Lesson learned, Woodrow. Lesson learned.
Jody Fuller is from Opelika. He is a comic, speaker, writer and soldier with three tours of duty in Iraq. He is also a lifetime stutterer. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information, please visit www.jodyfuller.com