Monday, September 24, 2007
Bad Hedge Day
A couple of weeks ago, I gave my loved one a hedge trimmer for her birthday. I’m such a romantic. Because she still hadn’t gotten around to trimming the hedge and because it already took up sixty percent of our garden, I decided to take things in my own hands and trim the hedge myself.
I’ve never trimmed a hedge before, but not to worry: there was plenty of hedge to practice upon. It borders the west side of our garden and separates us from our very friendly neighbours with their very ugly garden. They tore down part the extension to their house and built a new one, so their garden currently looks like a popular restaurant in Baghdad: it has more craters than the moon.
The hedge is about 25 meters long and about three-and-a-half meters high. With my botanical expertise I can tell you that it consists of pine-ish kind of tree-like things with a lot of thin branches and green flattened needle-like stuff at the ends. There, now you know what I’m talking about.
Before starting the trimming job, I carefully read the manual. However I quickly decided that I obviously knew better than those silly people of Black and Decker, who after all never laid eyes on my hedge before. So I invented a revolutionary procedure in hedge trimming.
Ten minutes later, me, my brand new electrical hedge trimmer and my revolutionary procedure in hedge trimming had created a drama. I’d started cutting at an angle, so I dug in deeper and deeper into the hedge. Until I reached the brown layer of twigs at the core, the ones that never produce green leaves/needles anymore. Once you uncover those twigs, you’ve got a brown patch in your hedge for ever. That much I know about these hedges. Bummer.
My wife came out to gloat at my dismal failure and gave me her expert advice (she’s trimmed a hedge one more time in all her life than I have). She stuffed the baby in my hands and set out to enjoy herself with her new toy. Fifteen minutes later, she’d done most of the hedge, leaving the top for me to do.
Of course I couldn’t leave it at that, so the moment she left the house I redid her part just to show that there was much to be improved upon. And I must say, I got it pretty straight once I started with the top (as the manual had suggested). I did take away too much here and there – but hey, it was my first time. And I’m sure it will all grow back one day.