One of the things I decided when we moved to Florida and consciously downsized our living situation was that I was going to take care of my own yard again.
I do not judge nor scoff at the outsourced yard-care model… it’s inarguably a wise time/money trade when the circumstances are right, but I came here to have less time focused on the office and more time on the not-office. That, and, the physical labor aspect of it is attractive to me, at least in concept if not always in execution.
I bought a battery-powered rechargeable mower, edger, trimmer, and blower – really went all out. I dislike working with gas, although not doing so does seem to diverge a little from the 1950s suburban nostalgia I’m half-consciously channeling in this yard care fantasy. Bought a few batteries so I can rotate and always have one charging/charged if one runs down on me while I’m working.
This is all to explain how I find myself out here, sweating, smelling of grass and dirt (and sweat). Sometimes I’ll wear my wide-brimmed hat and no shirt, when I’m feeling extra manly. I listen to music and take a few breaks to hydrate and try to breathe the soupy Florida air a little less gulpy.
I imagine the conquistadors, wearing bits of armor over clothes, hacking through the dense growth, and feel a little better about my self-inflicted plight.