The rain started about seven o'clock Friday evening. I remarked that Saturday morning was likely to be quiet, with no lawn mowers or leaf blowers running. I returned from my Saturday morning run to discover that I was wrong. A crew with leaf blowers was clearing a lawn down the block. No doubt the clearing took longer than it would have in dry weather.
On Sunday morning, on my way up 16th St., I heard a leaf blower running. It was an electric model and so quieter, but I'm not sure that the neighbors would have found it easy to sleep through its noise; on the other hand, the fellow running it may know their habits. This was a row house, with a yard that looked to be about eight yards by ten. It occurred to me that using the leaf blower might save five minutes over using a rake, and ten over using salad tongs.
On Sunday afternoon we spent about three and half hours raking and hauling leaves: from the alley, from the back yard lawn, from the flower beds. And here I have to say that I wouldn't have minded using a leaf blower on the flower beds: it would pull up fewer flowers, and probably bring along less mulch. But do we want to clutter the garage with a tool we might use five times a year? Given the weather, I didn't mind spending the time outside.
Oaks are slow to drop their leaves, so there will be at least two more afternoons spent raking this fall. We'll see how the weather and my attitude hold up.