Well, well. Great start to the day. I decided to mow the lawn early, before it gets hot. We're supposed to have rain later today, also, so I wanted to get it out of the way. Another reason is that the grass is about 8-10 inches tall. No, I'm not kidding!! I haven't mowed for almost 2 weeks, and in this weather with heat and rain consistent, I need to mow at least every 4-5 days.
I checked everything I'm supposed to, the oil level, the gas level both are good. Close the hood (It's a tractor mower), sit down and check that all levers are in the locked or neutral positions, then adjust the throttle and choke. Turn the key. Chugga, chugga, chugga, putt, putt, putt, rrrrrrmmmmmm. Here we go!!
I backed out of the workshop, and put it in forward to make the first couple cuts which is the 5' wide strip leading from the back to front yard and is right beside the shop. I made the first and was turning the mower around, and it died. Hmm. OK, restart it. Adjust all the levers and choke again. Chugga, chugga, chugga, putt, putt, chugga chugga, putt, putt. Nothing more. No rrrrmmm. So I lifted the hood again, just as if I would know what to look for, aren't you impressed?!?! Tried again to start it, same ol', same ol'. Sat there staring at the tiny motor, wondering what to do. I could call my friend who is helping me with many details of getting this house ready to sell, but he's on a vacation/business trip to Minnesota and I didn't want to bother him, even though I could reach him by his cell phone. I thought about getting the manual, then I realized that I've already given it to Scottie (my handy friend) who is keeping the mower when I leave here.
I continued to sit and ponder my predicament for a few more minutes. I looked again under the hood and noticed that . . . the gas tank is empty!!! How could I do that? I checked it! It occurred to me that the last 2 times I mowed, it was at about the same level. Interrrrresting, very interrrrrresting. I'm guessing that in the shop, which is not well lighted, there was a shadow passing through the opaque sides of the gas tank which looked to me as if the tank was over half full. Wahhhhhhhh! No, I didn't cry, but almost.
I finally gave up and called Scottie. He's back in town and is on his way over to see if he can figure out a way to restart it. If this thing had a carburetor, I'd know to put a little gas in it, but it ain't a car. So I'll just sit and patiently wait. It's occurring to me that most of my problems are self-created!! Duh.
Later - I had a clogged air filter! It was old and really dirty. Scottie found that when he took it off the mower started like there was never a problem! So I made a run to Lowe's and a handful of other things I needed (Is there anyone who can go to Lowe's or Home Depot without buying something or other?), put it on and shazzam! It worked! Of course, by this time, the heat had fallen down over everything, and by the time I got it finished, I was drenched. I wore a HUGE hat to protect myself as well as possible, but it didn't help with the heat or the humidity.
I came in and looked at my red face, peeled the sopping clothes off and crawled in the shower with cold water. Now, 2 hours and 4 glasses of water later, I'm beginning to feel human once more. Silly, but human!!
This is another of those "adventures" in my life that I consider a growing experience. I have so much to learn. I was shielded from so many tasks by my late husband. His intentions were, I think, good. He didn't want me to "have to" do it, or he did it himself out of pride and a sense of accomplishment. It means, however, that I now have to learn things the hard way. The advantage is that I probably will really learn from the experience . . . and I have a better appreciation for his sense of accomplishment. Installing the filter was easy; The fact that I learned (1) to be more careful about checking the gas, and (2) what else to look for next time I have a similar problem. Baby steps.
And life is good. Not perfect, but good.