Thistles: by Mary

I got the call at home in the city. The weed commissioner had been trying to find us. His message: We need to take care of the thistles or be fined, plus he would have to send someone out to do it for us.  

Other than the message, he was very nice, and we ended up having a pleasant conversation. I told him that I understood, but felt somewhat picked on as we had just purchased the land and were trying our best to clean it up. Why hadn't he made the previous owners take care of the thistles? "No one had complained before." I told him we were already working on the thistles and would continue, and PLEASE don't send anyone out. This land hadn't been used for many years and was free of chemicals. We didn't want the whole place sprayed from an airplane.  

His suggestion to have a neighbor mow the thistles didn't work in our minds. There was too much unknown junk in the fields - like two bed springs we found later - to risk the equipment of someone we didn't even know.  

So, Father's Day weekend - thistles. Larry's birthday and our anniversary weekend - thistles. Every weekend - thistles. A whole swath of them wrapped around the back of the farm buildings. We had no idea they were so bad in the field because of the tall weeds. There were endless solid patches the size of rooms.  

Larry was surprised at how hard I could work, but I wasn't surprised that he could repeatedly push a wheel barrow piled high with thistles, through the weeds and up a hill, to a burn pile. He has always been strong and a hard worker. I enjoyed working side by side with him. Another time, on a rewarding cleanup day, and after working to near exhaustion, I told him if I had overworked in the heat and died in my sleep, he and the kids needed to know that I had a wonderful day and wouldn't change a thing.

I don't understand it, either.                                                                                                                thistles continued - Larry's account 

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