Mood:Like a man who has advanced the frontiers of civilization
Music:Sun Kil Moon - Carry Me Ohio
Conquering the unexplored jungle that was my front yard.
It was a beautiful sunny day today, as is typical for the late Northern California spring. The sky was host to a few white cumulus clouds and the temperature reached about 80° F, which is good weather for yard work. I came inside at around 6:00. Since noon I have been attacking my atrocious front yard. It was horribly overgrown and I have been neglecting it. I cleaned up quite a lot of it, but there is still much that could be done to it. I filled my yard waste bin. It's too bad they picked up yard waste this morning and I missed it. I should have done this yesterday. I guess I will have to whip the yard into shape in installments. I cut the grass and did the trimming and cut back the bushes growing along the sidewalk. I still have a large patch of golden poppies growing around/on the treestump in my yard, and I still don't have any idea what to do with them. They're so neat, it seems a shame to cut them, especially since it would only expose an old bare rotting treestump anyway, but I'm not sure how to get the other weeds out of them so that they will look really nice. At any rate, the improvements may cause the neighbors to begin to suspect that a civilized man lives here again, or at least the yard will stop giving any Viet Nam vets who drive past nasty flashbacks. The muscles in my arms are a tad sore, and a little shaky. I picked up some sun, but I don't think I burned any. My genetics is rather sun-resistant, for a white guy. I don't burn easily, and hardly ever badly, when I do. I am dotted here and there with little grass and weed flakes and snippets. I smell of sweat and chlorophyll and gasoline.
Actually, I surprised myself. Since the Thursday before last I have been suffering from what I suspected was a pinched nerve in my back. My back has "gone out on me" about three times in my life before. Usually it is some sort of sprain originating in the lower right quadrant which leaves me flat on my back for two or three days, and it hurts when I move. This time it was different. This time, whenever I have been standing or lying flat on my back, I get pain in that region which runs down my right leg, feeling like someone is trying to twist my leg off. As a result, over the past week and a half, I haven't gotten lots of sleep. I haven't been able to lie on my back at all. I sleep for about four or five hours curled on my side and then it gets too much to stand, so I have to get up and sit at my desk for awhile. Strangely enough, sitting upright is the most comfortable position for me lately. Fortunately, it seems to be getting a lot better in the last couple of days. I managed to go out and work myself silly in the yard today without it bothering me and without the necessity of limping around. I suspect that it's gone, and good riddance.
There's something good about being tired after putting in a day of physical labor. It's a satisfying kind of feeling, pitting oneself against the forces of entropy. I look at my yard and get a sense, in a small way to be sure, that I have pushed back the jungle and broadened the frontiers of civilized space. Perhaps I will sleep the sleep of the righteous tonight. That would be nice, as it's back to work tomorrow.