I think Mike is going to cry when he comes here. It's usually very good to have friends who do cool things like bonsai, but then when you have to go cut the bushes that they will walk past on their way into the house, you see their face in your head, kind of half-horrified and half-laughing -- because they are good enough friends that you know that expression -- and you hear their voice going, "What happened?" And the answer is, I'm not entirely sure. I pruned them last year. How often do I have to do this? Seven times? (If you say seventy times seven, I will weep.) They are attempting to take over the front walk. I am attempting not to let them. I have the concept that visitors to my home should be safe from the foliage. They drew blood, but I mostly filled the yard waste bin. I have retired from the field of honor, bloodied but unbowed. Mostly unbowed. Only slightly bowed.
Dealing with the yard makes me feel like a hideous combination of Meg March and Lucy Ricardo. I don't like feeling like either of them, and my reaction to it is not to sob theatrically and try to get someone else (someone male) to handle it but to kill things. Faster! More branches! Wah!
My mom tried to tell me last year that working out in the yard would make it feel more like my yard. It does not. I still expect someone to come along when I'm hacking at things with the clippers and shout, "Get away from there! You damn kids! What do you think you're doing?"
Chives. I like the chives. They came back all bright and cheerful and budded and are lovely and do not attack me. I think I shall plant the whole yard full of chives. I will mow the chives weekly. My yard shoes will smell permanently like a baked potato. Probably my feet will smell that way a good deal of the time, since my yard shoes are Dr. Scholl's sandals. It will be better than this cranky clash of barbary bushes and God knows what those red things are and the little prickly weeds that can go through the garden gloves and poplars, oh, poplars. Sometimes they are sneaky little bastards, the poplars, and they grow right up next to bushes, inside where you can't see them until they're two-year-old trees and you can't yank them out easily any more. But I am the death of poplars. Wah.
*Yes, there are three people in this house. But one has back spasms bad enough that the other two are encouraging him to stay away from sharp implements.