Daily Flash Fiction 8/5/21 W/C 300
From the kitchen I can see the fence. Our fence divided yards, the Williams yard, the Phillips yard, and then the Rylin’s. We were hemmed in on three sides.
My job is to keep the fence line free from weeds. I get to use the weed-whacker. But don’t ever use it when there is paper on the ground. It makes an awful mess.
I found this out one day this summer. I went out to clean that fence line. Mom sent me out early to beat the heat. So I got on my best sun hat, that old Yankees ball cap Dad left behind last year.
“Make sure you pick up all the trash first. Otherwise, you’ll end up with bits and bobs of paper everywhere.” Those were my instructions. So off I headed with a plastic bag from IGA and the trusty weed eating machine.
A half-hour into the job, in the blazing sun, I gave up. The weed-whacker could do the rest. I got it started and whacked away. Until that back corner, where all the paper gets wedged. The whacker chewed up everything. All but one big chunk. Drat.
I lifted the chunk to put it in that bag. In a hollow in the grass, was a tiny man with a tin-foil hat.
“Hey, you! What’re you doin’?” The little man yelled at me, shook his fist at me.
“Um, sorry?” I stepped back, then knelt down to poke this tiny person and make sure he was real.
“Stop that! Go away, leave me be.” He pulled that paper chunk back over himself.
“Wait! Who’re you? Why the hat?” I lifted the cover.
“Drat, boy. The hat signals for my ride, the paper insulates.”
The heat was intense. I still have the scars.