I suspect that most people regard cutting grass a chore; not me, I love it!

 I have just spent 90 minutes cutting my grass for the umpteenth time. ‘Umpteenth’ is a little vague, so let’s be more precise.  I have lived in the same house for 40 years.  On average between April and October I cut the grass once a week and then perhaps twice in November.  So that is approximately 30 times each year, multiplied by 40 equals a grand total of 1,200 times.  At 90 minutes a time that comes to 1,800 hours, or nearly 11 weeks, of grass cutting. I have been alive for something like 3,796 weeks.  Grass cutting has therefore consumed 0.30% of my life to date – and that isn’t counting time spent cutting grass at other places – earlier properties we have lived in and, from time to time, my elderly neighbour’s grass. 

So what is the appeal?  I can think of three reasons.

The first is my mower. I have an ancient 24 inch Atco.  It is the sort of machine drooled over by the people who service it each year. They pat it fondly muttering ‘they don’t make ‘em like this anymore’.  It is British racing green with bright red blades and the words Atco are picked out in gold lettering. It also boasts a coat of arms with the words ‘By appointment to Her Majesty The Queen, Manufacturers of Motor Mowers, Charles H Pugh Ltd’ and on the side of the engine it says ‘Extra Long Life Engine’.  This is a mower to relish, as The Queen clearly appreciates.  I have to admit that the grass cutting box is slightly bent where I have collided with the occasional apple tree, but otherwise the mower is in good nick.

Secondly, my mower is quite noisy.  You might think this a negative comment but there is a massive advantage in having a really noisy mower; while I’m walking behind my mower I am cut off from the outside world. For 90 glorious minutes no one can contact me!  I can’t hear my mobile phone ringing in my pocket or even my wife calling me should there be some sort of emergency.  It is just me and my mower in a world of our own.

Finally, and I have saved the best till last, my mower leaves wonderful stripes – a bit like those photographs of well groomed lawns you see as you turn the pages of Country Life.  My mower and I relish getting the lines straight and true. Immediate gratification is guaranteed as it so rarely is with other pursuits with less certain outcomes. Couple this with the smell of new mown grass, visits to my compost heap, the exercise as I trot along obediently behind my mower. 

Heaven – or am I too easy to please?

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