So why do I have sweat running down my back, scratches on my arms, and open blisters on both hands? Possibly because I have a triple dose of this thing called “pride.” Or maybe I’m just unrealistically compulsive; once I get going on something, it’s hard to quit.

A few hours ago I hired a friend to come help me in my yard with some trimming and pruning and heavy-duty hauling of all the clippings we’ll generate. But instead of waiting until he arrived in the morning, I decided to get a jump-start on the whole process this afternoon.

Two and a half hours later, I’m pretty sure I remember why picking strawberries at age 15 was the last time I had a manual labor job. It’s just too much work!

But the yard looks pretty good out there already. And now the light will be able to get in through the windows where the overgrown shrubs have previously blocked it out. And a few more hours with both of us working ought to show some definite improvement.

I’m just glad I only do this every four or five years!