I got a workout in the Little Woods this past weekend. The never-ending game of pick-up-sticks continued. Billy had gone off to cut grass at my daughter’s house so I headed for the woods to make some progress before he got back. Most of the sticks have been raked into piles…lots of piles…so at this point my job is to basically scoop the piles into our handy rollout yard waste bin. By scooping I mean squatting down to gather as many in my arms as possible to toss in the bin. Thus the workout. All that bending and squatting makes for a tired back and legs fairly quickly.
(News Flash! My dear friend Pat Alt took some pity on me and gave me his garden cart!! Since he just moved into a community where someone else does all the yard work he decided he didn’t need it anymore. When he offered it I snatched it up before he could change his mind. You’d think I got a new car! If I ever unearth mine out of the storage unit from hell I will pay it forward.)
As I worked I was thoroughly enjoying the birds on the feeders. Between my four feeders and my next door neighbors’ feeders, the birds were all but frantic to fly back and forth between the yards gobbling seed as fast as they could. I think we have some pretty well-fed birds at this point. I hope they realize how good they’ve got it. The squirrels were hanging out under the feeders, taking advantage of the inevitable seed droppage. All in all everybody seemed happy.
Eventually, my better half returned and headed up to the woods to help with the sticks. And then it happened. As my daughter later said, “I knew it was a matter of time!” He saw something move! A SNAKE! In my woods. Exactly where moments earlier I had been scooping up sticks. I went into full-body shivers.
Granted, he was only about 10 inches long and very lethargic. But to quote Billy’s country grandmother, “It may not hurt you, but it will make you hurt yourself.” To my credit I did not insist on the demise of said snake, though it was tempting. We let him quietly disappear, back into his habitat that we had disturbed. I may never go to the Little Woods again.
Thankfully, we were just about finished with our work for the day. However, the end of stick-picking-up is not in sight. As my hubby put it, “It will take 12 more weeks to get rid of them at the rate we are going.” That’s because we can only fit so much into the green rollout bin. He’s thinking about trying to move all the sticks from the woods to the driveway, and load a big bunch of them in the back of his truck for transfer to our county landfill. Sounds like a dreadful amount of work but probably a bit more effective than our current method. I’m hoping to be absent that day.
All this sweaty work and snake handling required some cooling off, so we took ourselves away to our neighborhood pool. And y’all, I’ve found a great new use for my YETI. I had some slushy adult beverage in the freezer, leftover from the 4th of July, a yummy strawberry/pineapple concoction that really begged to be finished. I spooned it into our two YETIs and we headed off for a bit of chair lounging and YETI sipping. Billy’s only complaint….the YETI worked too well keeping his drink frozen. We eventually removed the lids so it became a bit more straw friendly. After a couple of hours of this pleasantness my heart finally calmed down from our reptile encounter. Maybe next time I’ll start with a YETI full of yummy BEFORE I go to the woods.