Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Saving the Planet, One Weed at a Time

I'm just all about Green this week. Last night I saved the planet, shrinking my carbon footprint by at least a size.

About a week ago the lawnmower spewed gasoline all over the backyard, Yukon, and a few of my flowers (certainly not environmentally friendly). Since then neither Yukon or myself have motivated enough to locate a mower repair shop in order to have the gas line replaced. There is something about small engine repair shops; they are always in some dark alley across from the bail bondsmen or junkyard, so I don't like to go there. And we haven't.

Sadly, in spite of our denial, the grass outside continues to grow in large increments. Almost 20 hours of daylight in Alaska means in order to keep up with the neighborhood, one needs to mow at least twice a week. After waking up yesterday and finding the grass had multiplied in height at least five inches since the night before, I rummaged around in our shed and found Mo.

A gift from my father many years ago, Mo has chewed up lawn from Port Angeles to Charleston, SC and back again with a reliability that belies its delicate features. An old-style push mower that relies soley on the power of the person behind it, this machine enabled me to make the yard look presentable. I also discovered something else.

I could hear Bear next door playing on the neighbor's swingset instead of his own. I could converse with the neighbor as she weeded her kholrabi bed. I could even hear Yukon cussing at the weed eater as he tried to get around the woodpile. There was no noisy, stinky power mower to maneuver around the slide or picnic table, just me and Mo working together in a squeaky rhythm.

The evening was lovely, the bugs few, and my family and I were actutally choring together. A picture out of my own memory scrapbook. And not too bad a one, either. Go green or go inside, we say.

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