I live in a community that does not have curbside leaf pickup. Instead, we are forced to purchase and fill paper leaf bags. In all honesty, I tell you this because I want your pity. You will see why as my story progresses.
We chose this house 12 years ago because of it’s park-like setting, sprawling yard, huge trees. We had both lived in the country growing up and had been living in apartments and a condo since our marriage.
When we moved here to to the North Coast, we had a 10 year old son who loved the outdoors and had visions of again enjoying nature by being in it. And wow, every fall, are we ever in it!
When we first moved here , the amount of leaves that fell off our trees was rather novel. We laughed about the 110 bags it took to clear them. For a couple of years we worked every weekend and nights in November to keep up. Then my husband got a job on the road and a pay raise, so we were able to afford to have the work done by someone else. Now, along with many others in this country, the economy has caught up with us, my husband is unemployed and the job again falls to us.
We do have some great lawn care toys thanks to the fact that I work for a company that sells landscaping equipment. And our son is now 22, a big strong guy who fortunately does like to help us, at least for a while.
The ecstasy of the job? Being able to commune with nature for a while, marveling at the diverse colors of the leaves, the lovely fall smells, blue skies, listening to bird songs, time with family and a great workout. I can eat pumpkin pie without guilt during leaf season!
The agony? The backbreaking part of the job – filling the damn bags. There are lots of good ways to move leaves, but stoop work seems to be the only way to get those suckers bagged up. The city has a pickup limit of 20 bags per week – hah! We bag that many in a day! And more the next day, and the next day…
So, here’ s to the beauty of fall, the wonder of fall, the back aches of fall! I will singlehandedly be keeping the company that makes ibuprofen in business …
Postscript: Bag count this season = 130, and we’re not done yet!