Tonight I want to be petty, but I'm resisting. I might yet, but for now, my better self is winning, and that's always the better choice.
Because I know I'll lose the story on Facebook (I lose everything on Facebook, until I find it again, and then it's a wonderful surprise!) I'm posting this here. Before it's gone.
If this was your reinforced strapping that was hidden in the long grass up by the road, I apologize. My tractor
ate it. But good news! When I took the mower deck off to unwind it
from the mandrel, I discovered a nest of baby squirrels! On the mower
deck! (bad choice, mama squirrel). Moved them with all their bedding
under a tree, and when I went back to take another peek, mama had
already relocated them. So no pic of cute squirrel babies. This will
have to suffice.
So here's the story. I'd been feeling judgey about the new neighbors. I don't like being that way, but I'm owning it. They leave their trash cans up by the road for days. They let Joe's beautiful garden go to weeds. They cut their grass about once every two weeks. Their dog killed one of Ashley and Jeff's lovely chickens (named after the Golden Girls ferpetesake!) and then last week, dog also bit Gerd. Wow. Speaking with Jeff a week or so ago, he advised that Christopher (neighbor husband) is still maintaining his NYC audiology practice while Maggie (wife) is here with construction and baby and dog and no one to help... and I felt like a turd.
On Tuesday I was cutting the grass and decided that since I was there anyway, I'd just cut over and do theirs too. And since I was working a few things out in my head, what the heck, I'll cut their along-the-road part too. And, wrapped in my mental cud-chewing, I drove off the side of the culvert and got stuck in the ditch. 10 minutes and a 14 year old assistant later, I was back in business, until the mower deck tangled, literally, with a section of strap tie down. Drive home, pull off the deck, cut away the webbing and prepare to remount the deck. Muttering the whole time. Of course. And then the magic part of this story. As I was about to slide the deck back under the tractor, I decided to take the opportunity to clear away the accumulated clippings and crud. Gloves on, 'cause that stuff's nasty, and set to work. I picked up a handful of grass, and a baby squirrel. And another, and another. They were all safely(?!) bedded down in the area through which the belt races. There were five in all, about an inch and a half from nose to tail, and Oh.My.Goodness. They were adorable. All breathing, all well, and all alive. And if I hadn't found them they'd have all, undoubtedly, been pulled into the belt and killed.
We have to make the choice to do the good thing when we can. And I'll keep trying not to be petty.