Spring Sprung, Grass Grew, Trees Bloomed

Apple Blossoms
Apple Blossoms

I left my husband a voice-mail as I left work, asking him to sharpen the mower blade so I could  spend the evening trimming the verge. The front and side yards, I hoped, would be dry enough to mow. The backyard presented thick, lush, tall grass that would take longer to conquer.  As I pulled into the driveway, I saw the mower waiting for me, but as I surveyed the side yard, I realized he had already mowed most of it.  Since the garage door gaped open, I entered through the garage and sought my elusive mate.  Apollo met me on the landing and I found Terry in the kitchen, slicing up the fresh green beans we picked up at the grocery store a few days ago.  I scolded him for mowing, but he insisted he needed the exercise.

We spent the next hour or so crafting a wonderful dinner of home-made chicken friend steak, white gravy and fresh green beans sauteed with some bacon, white onion, garlic and chicken stock.  Tasted divine, but left the kitchen a complete disaster.

We relaxed for a few minutes.  Then I changed into some work clothes and went outside to see if I could get the mower started.  Terry worried it had vapor locked or worse that the plug had fouled, since he couldn’t get it restarted after stopping it to talk to a neighbor.  He instructed me not to prime it before attempting to pull start it.  I tried four or five times without success when he joined me and told me to try priming it.  I primed it and he pulled the rope.  Of course the mower started up for him.

I finished the side yard in about fifteen minutes.  I unlocked the side gate to the back yard and eased the mower through, making sure Apollo didn’t sneak by me and escape to traumatize our neighbors.  Terry kept working on the hot tub, vacuuming it clean, in anticipation of our need to soak later in the evening.  I slowly pushed the mower through the incredibly thick grass up the slight hill to the top of the backyard (the north end) and crept along the privacy fence.  Thirty minutes later I had finished a bit more than half of the back yard, just as the sun set in the west.

Blurry Apple Blossoms
Blurry Apple Blossoms

As I returned through the gate with the now idle mower, I saw the last glimmers of sunlight illuminating the blossoms on our apple tree.  I pulled my cell phone out of my jeans pocket and snapped a few photos, but without the benefit of my reading glasses, I had no idea that the close-ups of the apple blossoms I took would come out blurry.  Oh well, at least the first shot I took (above at the top of this post) came out very well.  I continued on to the garage and put the mower back in it’s neat little area (then I  cleared for last weekend). Terry soon followed and we closed the garage for the night.

I watched an episode of Jeopardy (a couple of days old) in which the $1,000 clue for the Jeopardy round category of ‘Animals in Children’s Books’ referenced Rottweilers.  Here’s the clue:

The title pooch of “Good Dog, Carl” is this breed named for a German place

I knew the answer immediately of course.  None of the contestants guessed correctly, though.

By the time I finished watching one episode of Jeopardy, the clock displayed half past eight o’clock, and ticked inexorably on toward nine, the hour at which my mental faculties reduce themselves to the level of a pumpkin.  I winced my way down the stairs to the laundry room to change into my bathing suit.  I grimaced my way back up the stairs and slipped into the extremely hot water of our outdoor hot tub for a soothing soak.  Terry joined me and I tried to show him some of the constellations currently visible directly overhead.  I could only positively identify three or four, due to some lingering stratus clouds and light pollution.  The moon appeared nearly half-full and Venus and Jupiter still dominated the western sky.  I had remembered to take a few photos with my camera on a tripod earlier, but at that time the clouds had been thicker.  Had I waited just a bit longer, I would have had clearer skies for a better shot.  I’ll post this weeks’ Venus and Jupiter photographs tomorrow morning in my weekly wrap-up of my astronomy observations.

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