Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

From the 50s and 60s to today . . .



Friday, July 15, 2016

Mowed


There was a lot of grass on the Utopian Stringam homestead.
A lot.
And I mean the kind that doesn’t go up in smoke.
Or shouldn’t.
Anyways . . .
It needed to be mowed. Regularly.
Something I watched my older sister and brothers do millions of times.
Okay, it seemed like millions.
Have you gotten the idea I envied them?
Well, I did. 
Even though our mower wasn’t one of those swanky ride-on types that would have been . . . you know . . . fun, but was, instead the good old push type. Electric.
With a fifty-foot cord.
When I was nine, dad handed me the . . . umm . . . plugin, and told me to get to work.
My day had come!
His only advice: Avoid anything sharp and cutty, generally anything under the mower.
Oh, and start near the plug and work out from there.
I was a bit nervous, but for the first two passes, I did well.
Really well.
Then I forgot rule two.
Which led to forgetting rule one.
Sigh.
I decided I needed to backtrack.
An interesting thing about electric cords: They aren’t intuitive.
And never leap out of the way.
And when things sharp and cutty pass over them, they . . . erm . . . cut.
With varied and interesting results.
First, the mower quits.
Immediately.
And no amount of flipping the switch is going to turn that sucker back on.
Second, the two ends of the cord, one of which is spitting sparks, lie in the grass.
Another interesting note: If you take the two ends and try to force them together without first unplugging the live one, all sorts of pyrotechnics erupt. And the two ends don’t magically re-attach. Just FYI.
I survived. (I know you were concerned.) I then went to my father in tears and he accompanied me back to the scene of the crime and effected necessary repairs.
Tears forgotten, I was soon ‘back in the saddle again’.
Lessons learned.

Use Your Words is a writing challenge. 
Participating bloggers pick 4 - 6 words or short phrases for someone else to craft into a post. 
That's the challenge. Here's a fun twist: no one who's participating knows who got their words and in what directions the writer will take them until the day and time that we all simultaneously publish our work.
This month, my words came from: My Brain on Kids. http://mybrainonkids.net                         
Work, Nervous, Nine, Utopian, Swanky

Fun? There's more...
Here are the other participants:

Baking In A Tornado http://www.bakinginatornado.com/2016/07/use-your-words-cocktails-hawks-and.html
Southern Belle Charm                    http://www.southernbellecharm.com                       
Not That Sarah Michelle                 http://notthatsarahmichelle.blogspot.com                   
Spatulas on Parade http://spatulasonparade.blogspot.com/2016/07/spiced-banana-honey-roasted-pecan-cake.html                       
Dinosaur Superhero Mommy            http://dinoheromommy.com/   
My Brain on Kids                           http://mybrainonkids.net
The Bergham Chronicles                  http://berghamchronicles.blogspot.com
Never Ever Give Up Hope                http://batteredhope.blogspot.com
Confessions of a part time working mom     http://thethreegerbers.blogspot.ch/   
The Diary of an Alzheimer’s Caregiver     http://www.thediaryofanalzheimerscaregiver.com/blog.html 
Molly Ritterbeck                              http://mollyritterbeck.com/   
Juicebox Confession                         http://juiceboxconfession.com/
Climaxed                                         http://climaxedtheblog.blogspot.com     
When I Grow Up                             http://kimberlyyavorski.com/whenigrowup/    
Sparkly Poetic Weirdo                      http://sparklyjenn.blogspot.com/      

22 comments:

  1. Jeez, Diane, I know you had a great upbringing but sometimes I wonder how you made it to adulthood!

    ReplyDelete
  2. "And when things sharp and cutty pass over them, they . . . erm . . . cut."

    ^Sounds like something I would say. Love this. Kept a smile on my face the whole time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Jenn! My work here is done! :

      Delete
  3. I am so glad that you survived. Because yes, I was wondering...

    ReplyDelete
  4. Wincing at the thought of trying to jam those two ends together while the cord was still plugged in ... ouch ...

    And I'm glad you survived, too!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I can't help but wince when I think of it now. Yikes. What was I thinking?!

      Delete
  5. NOW I get why we never had an electric mower ;-)
    Glad you lived to tell! Welcome back, Diane!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This definitely wouldn't serve as an advertisement, would it?

      Delete
  6. Boy you were lucky at age 9 to get change and then a re-chance! I envied the push mower and was only allowed to do the back yard and not until age 11 because it was certain I would cut off something!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm quite sure my dad was wishing he had raised the minimum age as well!

      Delete
  7. An electric mower? We had one a few years ago but our yard was WAY too big so we sold it. Now at 9 I was using an old fashioned rotary style push mower. It was hard but I loved it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's what I should have had, the push type. I probably wouldn't have gotten into as much trouble. Probably...

      Delete
  8. Love this. Reminds me of the first time I was allowed to cut grass. My Daddy telling me again and again how to do it HIS way and taking every step I did. Thank goodness it wasn't an electric mower though!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think my dad was wishing he'd given me a little closer supervision. Sigh.

      Delete
  9. good grief! I often wonder how you survived your childhood - this is a perfect example. I'm sure we were more resilient back in those days :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wonder the same thing. I definitely had a busy guardian angel! :)

      Delete
  10. My husband tried to do the same thing when he mistakenly cut his cord in half with an electric saw. Right in front of the boss AND the safety inspector. Luckily, that boss was my brother haha!

    ReplyDelete

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