It’s Saturday evening. Easter Saturday. And I’m spent, but not finished.
Herself texted, thinking she’d get a break today. But it’s not to be. Honestly, I didn’t expect to see her until well after dark. Tax deadline is Monday, and I’m certain they are pushing through so they don’t have to work tomorrow on Easter. I’m used to being a tax accountant widower. It’s sad we have to rebuild our relationship twice a year.
I’ll still cook.
Because She’ll need food to bring for lunches anyhow.
I have no idea what the plan is for tomorrow, but I’m certain it involves grandkids. I’m also certain it involves 9AM mass, since I promised our elderly neighbor I’d bring her.
Today, since there is no mass, and thus I don’t have an 80 year old to bring to the Church and later to the store, I got an early start. I had a ton of lawn work to do. The front beds were loaded with the leaves I raked into them to shield them from the freeze months back. I cleaned those out. Then turned to where the compost bins are, in the back. That area collects every last bit of lawn debris – sticks, leaves, branches. That all needed to be bagged for the city to pick up.
I took a break, went to the store for beer and whatnot, and planted the center garden – Green beans and radishes. I planted wildflower seeds and sunflowers outside the compound gate. I have a plan to recycle tile laying buckets into a watering system for it. My other seeds came in today, so I have more planting to happen in the next day or so.
That doesn’t even count the dozen plus projects I have queued up.
Then I hit the mother of all nightmares – The garage. Tons of trash, parts, tools all needed sorting. I can’t start shit until all the tools are cleaned and put back where they belong. This is a worthy project since it’ll stop me from losing my mind and cussing uncontrollably when I can’t find what I need.
This is why I relate to Phil at Busted Knuckles. Shit never ends. Literally.
But cleaning and sorting the garage isn’t a tough chore. I enjoy it. I love my tools and my stash of parts and material. The garage is my happy place.
When I was a young man, a field tech, I was anal about my tools. Every tool had a spot. I made sure they were clean and in their place before I got behind the wheel of the truck to return every day. I learnt the hard way. I left tools on a job site. Tools that if I didn’t have a buddy who ran an AC supply business, would’ve been expensive. I’ve known the dude since kindergarten. He’d sell me Klein, Channellock, and other top flight tools at cost plus a tiny vig. As an example, I sported a pair of linesman pliers – these ones – I think I paid $10 at the time for them.
I lost them.
Then, when I returned to the restaurant – A “Holly Farms Chicken” in Manassas Va, there they were, above the ceiling.
But now I’m old. I get wasted and tired, and shit piles up on my workbench.
And I cuss and scream, mostly to the dogs, when I can’t find my shit.
So I take time to clean up. Just not every day.
As I sit here, I’ve showered. I’m listening to tunes as I write. I’m sipping a Sapporo. I’m at peace. As I gaze at the camera display, I can see an entire property where everything is in order, and working. I’m OK with what’s next.
What’s next is feeding the hounds and myself.
They’ve been following me around all day. When I was out front raking, the mailman posted. We chat from time to time. He’s been following the pups as they’ve grown. Girlfriend wants a piece of him some kind of bad. Once when we chatted he said they were good dogs and probably wouldn’t bite him. I told him, no, they would absolutely do just that and if he were smart, if they were out, he’d be wise to get his ass off the property. They’ll turn back the second he’s off their turf.
So he gave me my mail and girlfriend was going nuts. She was joined by Jasper.
I hollered “ENOUGH!”. “KNOCK IT OFF YOU SEE HIM EVERY DAY FFS!”
They both immediately sat, staring with their happy faces. Girlfriend stared and cocked her head as she studied him.
He said he felt blessed that they did that.
It was a moment. A good one.
Back to round two.
It’s 6. Time to feed the dogs and start the grill.
I’m tired as hell.
But I’m blessed beyond all measure.