There are times when this whole post-feminine world and being taught my whole life that “You don’t need a man” all comes crashing down and I find myself eating humble pie and wishing I indeed did have a man. That I would trade all the fish and the bicycles in the world for one good man.
Today is one of those days.
It’s a small thing, but it represents a much bigger thing. I am sitting here typing this because even though the sun is shining and I really need to get the grass mowed before it is a jungle, I can’t get the darn mower started.
It all began a few days ago when my older daughter expressed interest in learning to drive the riding lawnmower I use to mow my little 5-acre slice of heaven. However, as mowing takes nearly 4 hours and this time of year has to be done nearly every three days, I cannot express how excited I was to hear my daughter say this.
And so she did, and then she ran the mower out of gas. And I didn’t think to turn off the key.
The next day when I hop on the mower to finish the job before the weekend (I run a small business on my property as well, and it looking presentable every weekend is important.) and — nothing. Not even click, click, click.
So there I am, nearly completely devoid of mechanical skills or knowledge, knowing the problem likely is that the battery is dead, but having no idea what to do about it.
So I make some phone calls. It takes awhile to figure out if the battery is a 12 volt or a 6 volt and if I can jump start it with my car, or not. “Don’t just guess. It could blow up,” I am warned. Yikes. Finally it is determined the battery is a 12 volt and I could jump start it with my car (gulp, I have done this once before, with supervision.)
Ok, so I go to get my car and jumper cables only to discover one of the cable ends is frayed and about to fall off. Great.
Next I am told to take the battery out, with a crescent wrench. Ummm, which one is that again? A crescent wrench. Hummmm.
(Ok here I can just imagine the mocking from “modern” women who can identify a crescent wrench and know how to jump start a battery, or even rebuild an engine. Good for you. I am happy for you. I actually have tried to learn these things too, in my former progressive days, and failed. It just doesn’t stick. I was one of only two girls in my high school auto shop class. So there. I am no wussy. I can do many things, but fix mechanical things is not one of them.)
I should mention that this is the happening on the last dry or sunny day in the forecast that week, so “doing it tomorrow” isn’t an option. Getting it done before the weekend is also a dwindling option.
So, the rain begins. I ignore the issue for a few days. Then I start thinking again about how I need to get my mower going. I make some more calls. After being asked a few times if I had a jump box, I decide that living on a small farm, maybe I need one. I can be a self-sufficient woman then. My jump box will save me!
So $99 and a trip to town later, I have one. I pull it out of the box, plug it in, and let it charge overnight.
Just now, I tried to jump start the mower. I read the (always poorly written, who writes these things?) directions. Hummm. Ok, I don’t completely understand, but I am going to dive in. I hook the jump box up (please don’t explode or shock me) and try to start the mower. Click, click, click. Ok, that’s something. But now what? Do I leave it sit there for awhile? Is it not strong enough to jump it? Is it not hooked up right? I wait a minute. I try again. Click, click, click.
I unhook the jump box and bring it inside.
And then I see them. Mouse droppings near the bag of cat food in the garage. Great. Now I have to learn how to kill mice, too. Lucky me!
And I have a good, hard, long cry. I don’t want to do this alone, anymore. I really don’t.
(I rarely cry, I am not a woman who cries at the drop of the hat, just in case anyone is thinking I am “just being a crybaby girl” about all this.)
And then I think of this blog post, and how at the time I didn’t get it or agree, and how maybe now, I am willing to admit the author is onto something.
Women, hear my words: Men make life easier in so many ways, ways you don’t even likely know, because they don’t brag about it, almost invisibly taking care of these little unpleasantries of life, things you don’t even notice or worry about, until you have to face these things yourself, without a man.
And a man is pretty darn nice to snuggle up with at night, too. If you have one, take good care of him.
Let those who have ears hear.