It has now been over a year since my first shoulder operation, and nine months since my second one, and today, for the first time I worked like I used to in the yard. Now don’t get the impression that I’ve lost a bunch of weight, ‘cause I’ve not, but I do have some stamina again, at least for a couple of hours work.
First though, I had to change my bed, and make a couple of phone calls. Judy and I applied for early Social Security online this week, and mailed in the documents they required. I got a follow up email from the SS Admin office in
Yes, they didn’t mess around with putting me on hold or asking me to leave a message, just “call back later!”
I finally got through and that’s when I found out I did not have to mail them my original documents or any documents at all. I’m not sure why the instructions tell you to, but they do, and I did! However, I was told they would mail them back to me.
Then Baylee (my dog) and I began work on the lawnmower trailer. The Knights have this old trailer frame that we share. Steve was the last to have it and the deck rotted away, so I picked it up and brought it home last summer. Ron and I planned to work on it together, but, as you know, he and I both had a little surgery this past year and we haven’t been able to get the job done.
So, today I did it by myself, with a little supervision from Baylee, and Judy who held two bolts that I could not reach until I tightened them. The trailer was stored sitting over on one side, so I just put the plywood up against the trailer frame. I held it in place while I drilled the holes with c-clamps, alternately shifting each end until I centered the 4X8 sheet of marine plywood on the trailer. The only bolts I could not tighten were those I could not reach over or under and hold with my other hand. That’s when I went and got Judy away from Dr. Phil!
Turns out I completed the little project in about an hour. I had thought it would take much longer, but it did not. I plan to use the eye-bolts (shown) as anchor points for my tie-downs, which should hold the mower firmly on the rig.
Then the real hard work started.
Two years ago I put in a rainwater drain at the top of my driveway. Then about a year ago they started a new house about a hundred yards from the cul-de-sac where the drain is. Oh, they put up the required plastic barrier and straw like they are supposed to, but it did not keep the mud from stopping up the county drain and threatening my supplemental drain. I should report them, but I don’t think the EPA is too concerned about local housing construction too much!
My drain was already cleaned and clear, but the county drain was completely stopped up. I dug through about 6 to 8 inches of dark topsoil, in about a 3-foot square area until I found the grate. Surprisingly, the drain box was clear of dirt and debris…just the grate had clogged and allowed several inches of soil to be deposited on it, rendering the drain useless, and forcing storm water further down the curb to my little drain, which constantly gets clogged with leaves and overflows down my driveway.
So, I finally got, after having to make Baylee move several times, she loved the dark damp earth and wanted to lay right where my shovel was supposed to go, the grates out. I bashed them against the pavement and cleared off the dirt and roots, and then put them back in place.
I have much more digging to do along the curb of the cul-de-sac, above and below this drain, but that hour was all my old body, especially my back, would stand for one day.
I got on the mower, which I used to carry my implements of destruction up the hill on, and took them back down to the basement door.
Before putting the mower up, I ran several rounds in the front yard, knocking down the wild onions, and mulching up the tiny limbs that had accumulated over the winter months.
After a hot shower, I was pleasantly surprised by a wonderful meal Judy had waiting – ham, mashed potatoes, peas, and some fried onions and apples! Man that was delicious and hit the empty spot in my stomach, which by then had begun eating itself!
At least I know now that this year has the potential of being a much better year than last. Come on warm weather…I’m ready!