We finally bought a lawnmower on Saturday.
I can't be having with petrol-powered mowers. For one thing, it means keeping petrol on the premises. And electric mowers, as a rule, mean trailing some huge extension cord around the lawn with you.
A push mower, then? Been there, done that. Never again.
The answer we found was an irritatingly-named battery-powered jobby.
"Almost as light as a feather" says the blurb on that page. At 36kg, that's some feather. I can only assume the idiot who wrote that got some bigger idiot to deliver it to her house. I didn't have that luxury: I had to lift the damn' thing into and out of the car myself.
"Battery fully charged", the salesman assured me. I was actually looking forward to mowing the lawn on Sunday. A fitting culmination to our endless house search, I thought. When Sunday morning dawned bright and clear, I was down in the garage, assembling the new mower and reading the instructions.
In retrospect, maybe reading the instructions was a mistake. They don't mince their words. "Charge the battery for at least 16 hours before first use, or you will definitely cause the mower to explode and level all non-brick structures within a 20 metre radius." I may be paraphrasing slightly, but I definitely got the impression that pitching straight in would void the warranty. Sighing, I put the battery on charge and the lawnmowing on hold for one more day.
Last night, then, I arrived home at 5:30 and broke out the mower, in the failing evening light, for its first run.
Our house borders on a small patch of common ground that's shared between the five houses in our block. Since ours is the only one of the five with a lawn - and therefore the one with a mower - the job of mowing this common patch also defaults to me. I started with that patch first. It's bumpier than it looks, and liberally endowed with weeds, but I think I made a reasonable job of it. Then emptied out the catcher before moving on to our own lawn.
By the time I got to that, it was almost dark. I worked quickly around the edges while I could still see where they were, then - trying to avoid the gathering clouds of insects, and navigating by feel of the bumpy ground - set to work mowing up and down in the traditional stripey pattern I learned from my parents.
I didn't have the heart to look at it this morning. Sufficient unto next Sunday, I figure, is the evil thereof.