When Chuck and I first looked at our house in Mulletville, the backyard resembled a rain forest, minus the parrots. It's possible another family was living amongst the neck-high weeds and debris. There wasn't a speck of grass to be seen.
Like many other first-time home buyers, that didn't deter us from making an offer. Our panties were ripe with thoughts of potential. Possibility. Transformation.
(If you're thinking of buying a home and hear yourself ask your partner, "Can't you just picture x and y?" run. For the love of God, run.)
After two years of living there we finally made some updates to the yard, like adding a colorful horse and dropping $3,000 on a curtain drain— which is even unsexier than it sounds, if that's possible.
I also spent a fair amount of time learning the difference between annuals and perennials. Once I mastered that, I dumped a buttload of money on flowers and Miracle-Gro. I weeded. Plucked. Snapped. Dead-headed.
My garden grewith.
Fast-forward to this week. As I mentioned, our house is on the market for $5. I've gone back to work and have the pleasant experience of driving right by the house on the way. As a I turn my head I can see the tips of daisies and a bunch of other stuff I planted but now can't name.
Someone else will get me, the flowers heckle. You dropped hundreds of dollars on me for nothing. Nah, nah, nah nah nah.
Those flowers are assholes, I tell ya.
I decided to show the flowers a lesson.
On Tuesday, I drove to our former house on my lunch hour and—in my suit and heels—got a shovel from the garage.
I'll show you sons of bitches! I yelled.
I started digging.
It was gross. There were worms and spiders. Dirt fell into my heels. The roots snapped and shot dirt into my face. Sweat dripped down my brow as I hauled the flowers into a bucket, filled it with water and soil and dragged it to the car.
Halfway through I noticed the neighbor was outside in his underwear, smoking a cigarette and watching me sweat and swear. He seemed to be enjoying himself—almost as much as the neighbors enjoyed the futon fuck session.
His amusement spurred me on.
You like that? I wanted to shout. A woman in heels with a metal shovel get you going, big boy?
I went back Wednesday and today. Again the man came outside to smoke as I uprooted more daisies and more cone flowers.
Bizarre silent movie? Oui.
There's one last patch of pink fluffy things I need to dig up and then I am done. No more flowers heckling me. No more dirt on my hands. No more underwear voyeur. No more thoughts of a new Mulletville couple sitting on the patio enjoying the fruits of my labor. (Or flicking their cigarette butts into my garden, which is more apropo for the neighborhood.)
Yes, this experience has been highly satisfying. When I look back at my first week back at Mulletville Corp after being home with two kids all winter I will smile.
Attacking things with a metal shovel is highly satisfying.
Special thanks to Chuck, who stopped asking, "Are you on crack?" as he saw me dragging tubs of flowers from the car and instead just shut up and helped me replant the flowers at our new home.
About me: I'm a 40-something mother to a pickle party of a family. My husband Chuck, our tween Junior, our 6-year-old Everett, our toddler Cam, and I live in a town in Connecticut I affectionately call Mulletville Lite (aka my childhood hometown). My friends call me Nutjob, and they're right. In my husband's spare time he dresses up as a Viking and chases ghosts (and I'm the nutjob?). I'm a freelance graphic designer and writer.