To start, I’ll apologize to those of you with terrible connections. There are a lot of pictures coming up, because it’s been a busy coupla days! But first, a story…
So…about those Joneses. Here’s part two: some of you can relate and will appreciate the story for that; others of you will just laugh at me. I apparently got a hint overzealous about mowing the yard. First I was excited because the lawn mower really did start right up, just like Dad promised. If you don’t know him, Dad is one of those guys who can build and fix anything. I’m not one of those guys. Neither is Tony. It’s been about 10 years since I’ve used a lawn mower, so it took a few tries to get the blades going, but I did. And I mowed successfully…until I ran the mower completely out of gas. I’m a small motor (any motor, really) idiot, so I didn’t know that this was a minor disaster. Alas, I put in more gas, but could NOT get the thing to start. Mom assured me that sometimes they were hard to start after running them dry. I was pretty sure I had flooded it, and was happy to learn that time would heal that wound. I had no real reason to believe that, but I did anyway. After trying various combinations of throttle, choke, and key, I gave up and called Phil. (Sorry Dad, it was the middle of the day and I didn’t think I’d catch you!) He used a lot of big words, like air filter, carburetor, and fuel filter. Deciding to be brave, I find what I think could possibly be the carburetor and I add some fuel to it. I also grabbed a fire extinguisher, because Phil warned about putting the air filter back on lest there be a backfire and loss of eyebrows, and I wasn’t even sure it WAS the carburetor I had dumped gas in. Sadly, my ministrations changed nothing in the condition of my machine. Except it smelled like gas. Then I had an epiphany: maybe I had killed the battery. Surprisingly, the internet is a wading pool of information about that. Go ahead and see how much info you can gather to help you determine if your lawn mower’s symptoms are caused by a dead battery. The end of the story is this: the battery was dead; we jumped it with the car (after checking to make sure it was safe to); I finished mowing the yard. Then our neighbor mowed his again. I’m not kidding.
In other news, while I was busy not mowing the yard, we did some more exploring. Just over the hill from us is a place called the Seven Bridges. (Insert Eagles tune here.) We didn’t see 7 bridges, though I’m sure they’re there. What we did see were lots of wildflowers, some gnarly (dude?) trees, and a beautiful sunset. Unfortunately, we didn’t make it to the lake in time for photos, because it looked spectacular from the pasture behind the hill.
But wait, there’s more! Yesterday began our reprieve from the recent cold snap we’ve had. We went running in the morning, and then ran over to Torch Lake at lunch for a brief swim. I’m the wuss, but I swam while Tony only waded. It really was cold, but it was beautiful and refreshing!
Later, we found another pathway through the Skegemog Swamp, and hiked that over to the lake. We waded around in it some, and lamented that we didn’t have swim gear, because it was significantly warmer than Torch.
After leaving the lake, and running away from the flies (so far, I’ve pretended there aren’t bugs here, but the deer flies seem to have hatched and they are truly awful), we drove up Cherry Avenue on our way to East Bay in Traverse City. The road is aptly named; it winds between cherry orchards and two lakes. The cherry trees are impressive when they are full of fruit. It made me think – when parents give the “birds and bees” talk (by the way, is there really one talk that happens? …Mom? 😉 ) they should really give the “plant” talk, because every one of those cherries is here because of fertilization. And any of my students will smile when they tell you that pollen is plant sperm. You think about that 🙂
Joe Mama called to check in yesterday evening about 9:30, and immediately asked if we were having ice cream and watching the sun set. I assured her that, no, we were not having ice cream. We were, in fact, watching the sun set without ice cream. Because we had already eaten it 🙂 Some things are just too tempting.