Every year a blessing falls, the nutritious fruit of the walnut trees, a free gift of nature. Besides the crop, the trees grow bigger each year becoming prime for wood harvest. Outstretched arms cannot circle the Halloween Tree and that girth tells the tale, example for all the other lesser walnut trees. Past years have produced enough to fill twenty plus fifty pound animal feed sacks. Some years we simply add to the quality of squirrel life creating mini-mountains of plenty.
Remember the concept ‘bumper crop’? Bumper to bumper is the new bar, helmet required.
With the appointment for an agent and clients to view the house confirmed, my shed painting schedule ended. First the drive-way and a heavy-duty broom to find the asphalt under the sea of green. (Walnuts fall with a green outer husk.) Dodge ball, the constant fall aided by the wind, the clear drive never happened. Fine. Call it good for now and move to the yard. Prospective buyers need to see actual grass under the pea green obstacle course.
Start the mower, hitch the trailer and think ‘3 hours to rake and load’. By now, I am lamenting another of my hasty decisions to sell our bikes. Hanging on each handle bar was a helmet and I needed a helmet now. Hard rain hurts.
Hey, maybe a quick pass with the lowered blade engaged would slice a few to minutia, saving some rake strokes. Unhitch the trailer and give it a go.
Wow. Loud and probably denting the blades. Then, of course, I heard Bob’s voice reminding that walnut oil and grass don’t work together. OK. Fine. Stop. Rake. Now you, Gentle Reader, can remember “The hurrier I go the behinder I get.”
Clock ticking. Wind picking up. New objective. Never mind picking up, just get into piles clearing pathways through the beauty of this place. Mower and trailer back in the shed. Paint tools stowed. Rake with all the gusto that these old arms can muster.
Then came the crunch at the end of the long drive-way, a two car crunch. Quickly, move to the barn so the prospective buyers can have time and privacy to admire the home, the partially cleared harvest, the beauty that could be theirs. Right.
Fifteen minutes inside the house and gone. No walk. No nodding heads struck by the beauty. No admiration of the spotless decks recently cleaned and dressed. No head shake of wonder at the number of outbuildings, some just spiffed with new paint.
Oh well. By Saturday the gift of hard rain should be finished. By Sunday, the harvest up and gone. By Monday? I’m thinking early October blizzard.