“Are you kidding me?” I screeched!
“No, No No!” I protested to the Captain who was explaining his plan to me!
“I don’t want us to be number one on the 2016 Darwin Awards list” I cried out as my eyes widened.
Calmly, the Captain waited until I let all the data he was giving me, to sink in before he continued.
“All you have to do is drive the truck” he explained.
You would have thought he was asking me to drive the get-a-way car in a bank heist by my reaction…instead of the 80-100 feet down the driveway.
“What if you fall off?” I challenged.
I was on a roll now…I had my common sense wits about me and I was going to talk him out of this insane idea.
“What if I go too fast?” I continued my reasonable and well thought out objections to his plan.
“What if I stop and you are hurled over the cab of the truck and onto the driveway and….and…
and what if I run over you?”
Yep! That was a good objection, I thought smugly. And just for added emphasis, I smiled a sardonic smile and cocked my head to one side, raised my eyebrows giving him my quizzically green eyes look!
I knew I had him where I wanted him now. Surely, he would have to think about this a little more as he recalled the times we had a disagreement and what my temperament and state of mind was, and was I capable of being trusted with his life, especially if I was against the whole idea in the first place.
Perhaps, my dear readers, I better stop now and explain the whole situation to you.
First and most importantly, no one got hurt.…sooooo you may now finish your drink, knowing that the following newsy report I am about to give you, did not make it to the evening news or any other news outlet…including the neighbor hood gossips.
You see, we have about 80 foot of ficus hedge that runs down both sides of our property.
When the landscaper planted these “little” plants, about 3 or 4 years ago…. they were about 2 feet tall….and we thought that maybe in 10 years or so, the newly formed hedge might get to about 6 feet.
WELL…..this ficus hedge has grown a lot each year and has gotten to over 12 feet tall! We kept thinking…oh, lets let them grow a bit taller. You have to remember that plants grown down here grow 24/7. Meanwhile, the Captain has kept them in a sort of trimmed stage by using a very long handled gas hedge clippers.
And he has done this all from ground level.
Soooo now that I had him thinking of unfortunate possibilities….I charged ahead.
“We could ask our weekly lawn maintenance guys to trim the tall ficus hedges.” I said confidently. “They have all the necessary equipment!….and more guys…and more insurance”
To which the Captain replied……
.….”and they charge about $350.00 for just one side of ficus hedge trimming, that is $700.00.”
I gulped and scrunched up my face…“Oh, I didn’t know it would cost that much”
As the Captain was talking to me…he was literally leading me by the hand out the door of the house and towards the truck.
Out in the bright sunlight, my eyes focused on the shiny aluminum ladder perched precariously in the bed of our pick-up truck. There, he had the ladder already set up in the bed of the truck.
Are you getting the picture yet my dear readers?
His plan was that he would sit on the top of the ladder (no seat per say…straddling the rungs) and I would slowly drive the diesel truck down the driveway, as he used the hedge clippers on the top of the ficus hedge.
Darwin Awards here we come!!!!!
He assured me that he would open the back sliding window of the truck so I could hear his instructions (or hear him yell as he toppled over, that was my insertion, not his) and he would trim the top and stop and ask me to go forward a little and then stop and he would trim some more and so on and so on and so on until we were done with the 80 feet of hedge topping off.
I tried one last attempt at stopping this event from happening….
……..“What if I accidentally hit the gas instead of the brake?” You see, I was remembering a certain relative of a certain relative who went to a famous steak house and hit the gas pedal instead of the brake and slammed into the front of the steak house and ended up beside the hostess stand. That ended up on the television news that night…and luckily no one was hurt.
Well, except for the car.
AND the whole front of Tucson’s Steak House in Salina, Kansas….which by the way, I don’t think they are in business anymore. 🙁
But I digress.
The Captain didn’t budge. “Just get into the truck and start driving when I say, pull forward.” he said his brow furrowing. I think he was getting a little edgy by now….not because of the task at hand, but because of my reluctance.
So, I climbed into the truck, and I do mean climbed, as my little short legs have always had issues with that high truck.
He gently closed the truck door and I rolled down the window for one last attempt at sensibility.
He stood by the window and I said….
…..“ok, but you get down from the ladder each time I move forward, and only climb up the ladder when I have completely stopped”
He reached in through the window and gave me a quick kiss and moved towards the back of the truck….and I just knew he would do just what he wanted to do.
And so it began, The beginning of what could have been the Darwin Awards, but actually, in spite of my fears…it all turned out OK.
By the way, I took the picture below when he showed me where he would be sitting on the ladder. You know, so I would have something to remember him by….you know, to show the kids it was all his idea and plan. AND for the record, I insisted he wear one of my floppy hats to keep the sun off…(my only daughter has a special name for a very similar hat that I wear, but that would be a story for another time) AND he reluctantly agreed …I think just to hush me up.
I don’t think he would have posed for me if he knew I would be taking a pic and using it in my post. But I won’t tell, if you don’t! 🙂
Next, he positioned the truck along the driveway and I began my journey…starting first of course with prayer.
I drove beautifully….barely creeping.
I couldn’t see him (he was so high in the air)… but I thought it best to concentrate on my starting, moving and stopping. Whew! It only took about 15 minutes to trim the tops of the hedges.
The Captain said it normally took about an hour and a half to trim the tops,…. because he would have to keep moving the ladder along the hedge, climb up and climb down, etc.
So there you have it my dear readers…..I am so happy that we did not make the Darwin List …although all the while I was doing the stopping and going….I could just hear all the comments if something untoward would have happened, such as…
Why would a person get on a ladder in the back of a moving truck?
Why would one do something so stupid?
But folks, you really had to be there to appreciate what happened and how careful we both were….! I don’t know how, but somehow the Captain secured the rungs of the ladder in the truck bed and perhaps his plan was to jump into the hedge if he started to fall.
Thank goodness there is not room to drive the truck down the side of the ficus hedge on the other side of the house.
Plus, when I was in school, I was known as Miss Goody Two Shoes...I never did anything daring. I did not sneak a cigarette or a beer, which was about the extent of my friends’ bravado!
Have a great week and don’t do anything foolish! 😉