The Angry Rock

The day they dug the trench to the well, of course, it went right though the garden. They had to expose the well casing, so a few plants were displaced.

The next morning, when I asked Mary if there was anything that needed doing today, she asked that I re-plant the white bush that had been taken out. She’s a trouper, but I could tell that she was a little upset about losing this plant. She bought this plant in a 6″ pot about 8 years ago and it thrived. It got so big it had to be divided, so we took half to Westford (where it thrived and needs to be divided). It got big again, so she divided it again and planted some near the well head, where it got big yet again and was about ready to be divided when the excavator drove up. 

So I didn’t really think losing this bush was a big deal. But if I gotta waste my time on this, then I might as well make it interesting, so I decided to take the rocks which had been near the well head and build a brand new rock garden down by the pond.  So I got the tractor and started shuttling back and forth with the plants, rocks, and tools. I felt a little stupid doing it, because 200′ away, the crew was moving great gobs of soil and stone for the septic system, and there I was, put-put-puttering around with a shovel and an oversized garden tractor.  I’ll show them!

While loading the very first load of rocks, I got careless and clipped two fingers between 2 big rocks. Nobody has moved more rocks than I have, and I know better than to let this happen. I wish I could say my pride hurt more than my fingers, but my fingers hurt like Hell. I left my gloves on and kept working, but very carefully. If I’m bleeding, I’ll find out soon enough.

I dug a hollow out of the hillside and started lining it with rocks. The same rock that had smashed my fingertip a little earlier got away from me and slid almost down to the water.  I knew I’d never get it back up the hill by hand, so I backed the backhoe right up to the precipice, set the brake, and tried to grapple the rock back up the hill.  I almost had it when the brakes slipped a little and the tractor started to tip. I came THAT close to dumping the tractor in the pond before moving to a safer spot and trying again. I finally got it.

Eventually, I found just the right spot for this rock, but needed to flip it over. It wasn’t hard, but I was off-balance, and it pinned my leg to another rock and scraped a 9″ swath across my shin before coming to rest on my foot. The movie 127 Hours came to mind.

The rock doesn’t seem to like it, but I like the rock right where it is. I put another course of stones above it, backfilled with soil, and planted the white bush next to it. I hope it thrives.





As it turns out, only one finger got smashed, and it looks like I voted in an Iraqi election and dipped it in ink. It’s my fuck-you finger, and when it’s better, I’m going to point it at that Angry Rock.

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