My hands are sore this morning, and I slept late. Both conditions are probably related to one event: yesterday I mowed the yard. Well, not the whole thing, but a lot of it. It was getting out of control. And I have a confession to make: this is the first time since we've lived here (13 years now) that I've ever mowed the yard. I was nervous about even trying, wondering whether I could get the mower running or not.
Walt usually does the job. But I didn't want him to have to go out and mow as soon as he gets back from the U.S., all jet-lagged and everything. It only took an hour, but both my hands are sore from holding onto the lawnmower's handle (le guidon in French). It looks like the one on this web page. There is no padding of any kind.
You have to squeeze two fairly thin metal bars — one keeps the motor running and the other keeps the front wheels of the mower turning — so that they are pressed up against the mower's main handle, which is made of metal tubing of a larger diameter. Anyway, that's not clear, but the result is that my hands hurt. I'm really a greenhorn, I guess.
Here's a peek inside the greenhouse tent, which has been a great success so far. I'm thinking getting a real greenhouse out there might be a good idea and worth the investment. The seedlings look great, and are much bigger and sturdier than they would have been without the tent. It's still cold outside early in the morning, with temperatures in the 40s in ºF (9.6ºC right now). It was colder yesterday and the day before.
Red Russian Kale
Last week was the rainy one. That's why the grass grew so high, and why the greenhouse was a good thing to have. Yesterday was a holiday, so according to local ordinances we are not allowed to work with noisy power tools that might disturb out neighbors except between 10 a.m. and noon. Afternoons are off limits. The same is true of Sundays, but Sunday everything was too wet for mowing because of a heavy dew. And rain was predicted for yesterday afternoon, but it never materialized.
As you can see, the only plants I've set out in the garden are a few collard greens that overwintered in the garden. I'm not sure they are going to be productive. I could probably set out some kale at this point, but I think it'll be better to wait for warmer morning temperatures before setting out tomatoes, peppers, or eggplant.
P.S. Truckers are blocking roads around several cities this morning, but not around Paris. Truck drivers are unhappy because the new labor legislation would reduce the amount of overtime pay they get. Train and metro strikes are scheduled to begin later today and are reconductibles, which means they might continue until the end of the week. The labor unions will decide day by day whether to ask workers to stay out on strike or go back to work.