Thursday, August 21, 2014

So you want your grass cut?

Alright, I wrote a post about how Middle Child Syndrome isn't a real thing. Then, I decided it wasn't ready to post so I went to bed last night and planned on finishing it off today.... well, I still don't like it so I'm just gonna write this one instead.

In May, I started to work for a landscaping/lawn maintenance company. We started out doing spring cleanups and then got right into our regular maintenance routine. With this job, you see a lot of houses and a lot of yards. Yards of every size and condition. You name it, we take care of a yard like that. There are certainly yards we like and those that we... don't really like. We also have a lot of drive time with  this job .. Winnipeg is a pretty big place and while we are mostly in the south end, we've got some jobs that take us pretty far. So between drive time and actually mowing and weed whacking time, a lot of thinking goes on in my brain (nearly every song on the radio can be rewritten to be about mowing) and a lot of blog ideas come up. So, today, I'm going to go through the do's and don't's involved with hiring a maintenance crew ... and a few tips for when you see us out on the streets!

1. Clean up after your dog. You would think this is just something people with common sense would do, but no such luck. If you don't clean up your dog's doo doo, we are gonna mow around it and if it just gets worse and you don't take the hint, we skip the whole section.

2. Acknowledge that we are there. I'm not saying when we are at your place that you need to come out and say hey and bring us a margarita. I'm saying that if you are outside or coming into/leaving the driveway, say hello or give us a wave. We're not going to bite. This being said... we don't have ten minutes to listen to you talk about your cat either.

3. Try and keep your yard tidy. If you've got kids, we totally understand if you've got Little Tykes play structures and soccer balls and toys hanging around. If they're in the way, we'll move them and put them back no problem.. but it makes our jobs a lot easier if we don't have to move anything .. what if it breaks? Nothing would be worse than breaking a kid's toy because we had to move it to mow or whip. Like, "oh, sorry, we cut your grass so your kid can play outside but we broke their toy cause it fell apart when we moved it" .. that probably wouldn't fly.

4. Try and keep hedges/flowers/trees trim and out of the way as much as possible. It just makes it easier for us to maintain the grass when we don't have to worry about running your flowers and plants over!

5. Talk to your neighbours before signing up.. sometimes it's nice to bang out three houses in a row. Plus, at least if they don't want maintenance done on their yard, they'll know that we are going to be coming around every week (this leads to one of the dont's)

6. Cover your pool. We come to your house every week on the same day at relatively the same time. If there's a holiday Monday, we will come a day later. If you don't cover your pool a) we can't prevent every single blade of grass from flying into the pool and b) it's just plain mean cause it taunts us. Honestly, pool houses are the worst on a hot day cause all we wanna do is jump in!

1. Call our boss and then proceed chase us down the street to ask us to blow out your flower beds when we did them and are pretty positive you were watching from inside.

2. Yell at us that we have to move our truck and trailer. (this one is for the neighbours) When we park on a street, sometimes we need to park a little in front of a driveway or on the wrong side of the street. Afterall, we have a trailer on the truck that we keep our equipment in. If we happen to park in front of your driveway and you need to drive out of it, we realize it might be inconvenient for you to politely ask us to close the trailer or move the truck, but there is always going to be someone in the front yard that you can politely ask. It might also be nice if you didn't yell at us for parking across the street from your house, especially when your neighbour's lawn takes less than ten minutes to cut. Hearing "You better move! I don't want to see that thing first thing in the morning." isn't a nice way for us to start our day either.

3. Lock your doors while you drive past us weeding a McDonald's drive-thru. We have a contract with several McDonald's and this includes us weeding rock and garden beds. One day, while I was planting flowers in the drive-thru beds, I kid you not, a driver locked their doors. What exactly do you think I'm going to do...? We already look like criminals while we work at the McD's in our fluorescent vests, so thank you for making me feel like one. Remember, I can hear everything you're ordering, Mrs large Coke at 9 in the morning. If you felt so unsafe that a girl was planting flowers next to your car, you should maybe also consider the safety of your body and the effect of the McDonald's that you're eating. (I could be wrong and maybe this person didn't lock their door because of me but it makes for good, hard hitting journalism)

4. Drive like maniacs (this is for pretty much everyone). You know how they have those commercials about safety when you're driving through construction zones and you have to slow down? We are also working close to roads and it'd be real nice if y'all could slow down while I'm emptying the mower bag into the bag on the truck. Thanks.

5. Get mad at us if we can't do our job because of weather. It's weather, we can't control it. Not to mention, we don't want to skip days because of weather anyways. Cause that means we will probably have to work in 40+ degrees on a Saturday, and that is NO fun.

I guess that's enough tid bits for you today, especially since my typing has been getting worse since I'm so used to my iPhone. I keep spelling things wrong and waiting for autocorrect and I keep hitting space bar twice, thinking a period will show up at the end of my sentence.

Have a great night, y'all!

PS - we like tips ;)

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