When we first moved into our house almost 26 years ago, the former occupants left a push mower. We have been using that push mower ever since. No gas to buy. No loud noises. Just a bit of elbow grease and the task of cutting the lawn is accomplished. Our front lawn along the easement is actually quite small and the front yard is planted with flowers and ferns and a volunteer crabapple tree. So a push mower is not a big sacrifice to use.
Our neighborhood is a bit edgy. When we moved in, we were urban pioneers with a crack house down the street. Things have gradually improved over the years but when the housing bubble burst in 2008, the neighborhood regressed a bit again.
There are a group of young men who visit and live down the block and “gather” on the street. They move in groups and cluster. When we acknowledge them they respond in return, but do not offer hello first. Except for one young man. He always addresses us in a friendly way, even when he is with his “cluster.”
Yesterday, when we were cutting the lawn with our push mower, he stopped and watched and nearly broke into giggles.
“Do you want to try?” JB said.
“Do you need help?” he said.
“No. Just thought you’d like the experience,” JB responded.
“Wow. That’s an antique, right?”
“Yes, I guess it is. Not as old as me, though.”
“Well, that is one cool tool. So old school. Really old school.”
“Ah, yes indeed. Really old school.”
Then he moved down the street to join his “cluster.”