Posted by: A Part of the Solution | June 3, 2010

The Tractor Mower and Me

I’ve said it here before, and I’ll say it again: I don’t drive. No really, I have never driven. I’ve never wanted to drive. I’ve been appalled by petroleum politics since the oil crisis when I was a little girl. I’ve been further appalled at our more recent actions in the Middle East as we continue to put our desire for oil above our desire for political/ethical/moral integrity as a nation. And, having moved to the country, I still don’t drive.

That said, there’s lots and lots to do on a farm. There’s even more to be done on a start-up farm. Thank goodness for those wonderful volunteers who find their way here week after week to get their hands dirty, their legs sunburned and their muscles worked to the breaking point. Still, there’s all that lots and lots to be done.

That’s where the tractor mower comes into the picture. It’s a John Deere. It’s a John Deere LA125 Lawn Tractor in point of fact. It’s green. It’s wide. It’s sturdy. It weighs enough more than I do that the thought of that sucker rolling on me (with or without the mowing blades running) is enough to cause my jaw to clench and my brow to furrow.

Maybe if I had better hand-eye coordination our friend the combustion engine driven vehicle would have more appeal for me. Maybe if I liked the smell of petrol combusting better. Maybe if it wasn’t so gosh darned green. I have to say, the first few minutes on the tractor mower were not all sunshine and lollipops.

But after I’d circled the garden once or twice with my manure cart fully loaded in the back, I liked the idea of all the labor I’d just saved myself. And after I’d turned a few corners on slopes safely (pretty much every corner here, and most of the rest of everything else, is on a slope), I began to feel more confident.

The LA125 has cupholders. It goes in reverse. It has 13 different cutting heights to which its mower may be adjusted.  It has cruise control. It’s quite the machine, really. It’s simple enough that I can operate it; and really their engineers should all get a Hallmark® card for that feat of functionality.

I’ll be spending hours and hours on this thing in the years to come. The farm manager will maintain it, and I will cut the home acres grass and grassy walking paths. I will haul stuff into and out of the garden acres. I’ll run picnics worth of foodstuffs and dishes out to the back-back field in it. Maybe I’ll take it up the road and back again to the convenience store. Heck, that’s only seven miles round-trip–and I just love the local bacon sold at Mike’s Place. We’ll see about that….



  1. Oh my GOD!! Hell hath officially frozen over, which is a bummer because I was looking forward to a balmier afterlife than my current life in Yankee-ville. Well, at least now I won’t necessarily need to be the one driving there. I’ll perch in the frontloader and homecoming queen wave while you man the green monster.

    • That’s ‘staff’ the green monster, missy.

  2. Congratulations Carrie! I knew you could do it! Enjoy your new found freedom!

    • More like newfound reason to panic and sweat, but I’ll do what I can and get there gradually (my usual modus).

  3. Carrie. Driving. Wonders never cease.

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