About four years ago I bought an electric mower that was quiet enough that I could listen to audiobooks while doing my suburban adulting duties. The battery held enough charge that I could get about 1/2 of my lawn done at a time so that summer I bought another battery.
A couple years later I had to buy another battery in order to mow my entire lawn all at once, and last summer I had to leave each battery in the charger for about 48 hours in order to get about 20m from each.
Yes I felt good that I wasn’t buying gas, but you probably can predict where this story is heading.
This summer I was shocked to find out my mower was discontinued, and batteries selling on eBay for almost as much as I paid for the mower.
It finally got to the point where the batteries would die as soon as the blades touched grass.
I made a mental note that I should probably buy a conventional gas mower, because my electric one was now junk.
Then my whole family got a visit from Aunt ‘Rona, while at the same time both sides of my family faced eldercare challenges, and caring for my lawn was the last thing on my mind.
Yesterday I sheepishly apologized to my neighbor for the state of my lawn, and asked him how much he’d charge for doing my lawn. He looked it over with a practiced eye, shrugged, and said he’d do it for nothing. “I’m retired,” he said by way of explanation, smiling and wiping sweat from his brow.
He said he’d have to do it in stages because the backyard in particular was pretty thick, and apologized that he might not get to it for a few days.
I was stunned.
This morning I was in my driveway putting together a shelving unit as he started on my lawn. We got to talking, and he ended up giving me a spare mower, given to him by his brother. (He uses a rider mower.)
So thank you, neighbor Ed, for your kindness. I feel good that I’m extending the life of a refurbished mower, and I have another reason to pay it forward.
My next suburban adulting task is to figure out what to do about this zombie tree in my front lawn, which still blooms beautifully on about 5% of its branches but has some kind of steadily advancing fungal infection.
Looks great for Halloween, though, doesn’t it?