Yesterday, I spent the evening outside.

I haven’t been outside much the past several weeks, mostly because it’s been so hot and dry here that the garden stopped producing and the grass stopped growing and outside became a whole lot less appealing.

But Fall is here, and I needed to mow and clean up brush and pick up trash, so I spent the evening outside.

My first task was to bag up with pine needles and branches that had been cut more than two months ago. Each time I would attempt to tackle the job, the branches were still too green to break or the bags weren’t sturdy enough. After a three-month drought and a trip to the grocery store, I was ready.

The heavy brown bags (on sale 5 for $2) were sturdy and stood upright about four-feet high all on their own. With gloves donned, I found that the branches snapped easily in my hands, and within a few minutes the job was done. The job I had dreaded all summer was done, just like that.

Then, after picking up the liquor bottles tossed by passing motorists into my front lawn, I started the lawn mower and began the dance of weaving one pass after another right there in the front yard, before God and everyone. I started by making three rows around the perimeter, then I waltzed from one side to the other, box stepping at the ends. When I finished one section, I promenaded across the driveway to the next section of the lawn.

At first, my thoughts were fixed on the job at hand, straight rows, sharp corners, grass clippings being thrown in the right direction. But soon enough, I was thinking about the change of seasons, the Chilean miners, Alex and Jensen’s soccer game, my fortieth birthday.


I continued on, the rise and fall of the yard dance creating a rhythm for my mind to explore and imagine. Soon, the sun began to set, the temperature to drop, and the lawnmower to grow low on gas.

But it was finished: the lawn, the dance, the day.

I had a lot to do outside last evening, but I had a lot to do inside, too, in my mind and soul where I have been restless lately.

It was good to spend the evening outside.


This is where I am on this rainy Monday evening – or at least this is where I was last night. Where are you? See where others are by joining LL in “On, In, and Around Mondays.”