Dysmey Blog Archives  >  A Dry and Desert Yard

A Dry and Desert Yard

It has been so dry for the past few weeks. The grass in my lawn has dried brown all over my yard, except under shaded areas like my big maple tree and just in front of my house. As the grass has not grown at all, I have not had to mow it, except once early last week. I did go out twice with my weeder and pulled up a yard bag full of plantain and crabgrass, which stand out as green in the light brown and which are easy to pull out of the dry soil.

I walked out of the house to Madre's last Saturday afternoon, but once I got a block outside, it started to sprinkle and then to rain. I had to dash back to the house to close the windows. Then I watched the spectacle: It is not often that I see a summer shower. But it only rained for fifteen minutes, and did nothing for the grass in my yard.

My lawn, it seems, is about to expand, though.

During the Labor Day weekend my old neighbor Mr. Yeater was back, pressure spraying the wood on the fence along the east side of the yard. I have not seen him in a long time; he has been up and down the Plains states doing construction work. Currently he is working in Texas. His younger brother is living in the house right now.

I talked with the elder Yeater's wife. She told me that, as their family wanted some place bigger, they will be selling the house next spring. That was two weeks ago; evidently between then and now there was a change of mind. A white truck began to appear, and furniture started going into it. When I asked the wife of the younger Mr. Yeater, what was going on, I learned that the house will be put up for sale after Museum Days!

It looks like I will have to decide, starting next month, what to do with the driveway next to my house. I almost never use it myself. I have let both my neighbors use it, but they will soon be gone. And — assuming there is a buyer soon in this depressed housing market — I do not want anyone coming afterwards to get use to having a wide driveway, especially since most of it is in my yard.

At first, I had thought of looking for someone to dig up the gravel and hard soil, and replace it with sod. But my brother Bill, who was visiting Madre during the weekend, suggested just laying down topsoil and seed over the driveway. Nature will take care of the rest. He said (I think: The television set in the room was competing for my attention) that eight eighty-pound bags of topsoil should do the trick.

Despite the dryness it has not been as hot as it has been last month. Indeed, it has been pleasant. And the dryness has sped the maturing of the crops in the fields so much that harvest has started on Labor Day rather than in the usual October.

As it is now practically fall, I have put the air conditioners in my house away until next summer. The downstairs A/C with its wheels and disassemble parts was easy to put away in my closet. The upstairs A/C, which barely fits in the upstairs window, was a tougher task, as I had to wrench it out of the window, wrap it in tarp, and carry it to the shed.

Museum Days has come and gone. The weather ranged from very warm on Friday to very cool on Sunday: Fine weather for a festival. I spend Friday evening and Saturday morning at the desk of the old library building during our fall book sale. We had a lot of people show up, and many of those bought books and videos. There was a Free table, loaded with boxes full of do-it-yourself books, especially of the computer variety. The problem with such computer books is that they are now out-of-date, though.

I was late for my Friday gig because my doctor had to change my appointment from the morning to the afternoon. I was doing okay overall. But I had the doctor look at my lower left front molar, which has been achy all month. It turns out there is a crack in the tooth in front, and the socket is infected. The doctor has prescribed penicillin for me, and I will have to let the dentist know about this to prepare him for when I come in in mid-November.

A power fluctuation on Friday fried my server — again. I managed to download a live version of Fedora 13, running my server off the disk in my external optical drive long enough to copy my files to a thumb drive. After several power fluxuations frying the hard drive, I will have to replace it. The hard drive uses a parallel ATA — more and more rare for a notebook drive — so I had to order it online, and this time with more capacity.

Posted on the Dysmey Blog on 27 September 2010.