Sunday, June 19, 2011

new neighbor

I was out mowing my lawn. I have one of those push-mowers... no gas, really push. It's quiet and I don't have to drive jugs of gas around in my van. I get exercise. I like it. I mow twice a week. 

The new neighbor drove up, turned around in Rita's driveway, cruised down my lawn, and parked. I mowed in his direction. He got out of his pickup: gold with American flags stuck in the edges of the truck bed. A bit of plastic flew out and landed. He was carrying a case of Bud. 

He pointed to the muddy ruts in my lawn. "I'm going to fix all that."
He stuck out his hand and I shook it. He held it and squeezed. A bit longer than usual. 

"I've been a logger all my life. You like trees? I'm going to cut that one down!"
He pointed to a gorgeous pine. It shields my yard from the busy street beyond.
"It makes a mess on my son's car."
He kept looking at my chest. I guess he was trying to figure out the picture of the water-skier. Water-skier, wave: could be a puzzle.

"I love trees. I love that tree. OK. Well. I have a big garden. Would you like some lettuce?"

He thumped his belly. "Hell yes! We're all on a diet!"
He stuck out his hand again. "What did you say your name is?"