No Help Wanted

I am a do-it-myself. If at all possible, I carry a task out without any assistance.  I do not desire any witnesses either. If I ask for someone’s help with something, it only means one thing — sheer desperation!

Once upon a time, mid-February 2020, I was dogsitting for my brother and sister-in-law at their place in the hills of southeastern Oklahoma.  They have three dogs and three donkeys too.  My duties didn’t include donkey-care since they are self-sufficient stationed in the pasture.

I noticed that the donkeys were coming up close to the house instead of keeping their distance in the pasture.  It was fun watching the doggies go after the donkeys to get them to go back from where they came from.  The dogs eventually came back to the house with their heads hanging low at their lack of success.

The joke was on me!

I was talking to my Mom on the phone after she had seen the pictures I posted on Facebook of one of the donkeys up close to the porch. She asked, “If you don’t walk the donkeys up that close, why not close the gate?” My Aspie brain didn’t even visit the proposition of the donkeys being trespassers, much less of them escaping the pasture through an open gate. After the phone call, I checked and as my Mom guessed, the smaller gate near the barn was open. Even worse is that I was the guilty party of leaving it open when I went for a walk in the pasture. If the doggies could talk, they would have asked me, “Whose side in the doggies vs. donkeys game are you on?”

My brother commented on my Facebook picture that the donkeys would leave BIGGER deposits than the dogs ever would. Until my brother’s comment, the donkey’s version of hockey putts in a few piles in the yard had not gotten my attention. Since I was the guilty party in allowing the donkeys to trespass, I considered it my job to transplant the “putts” to the other side of the fence on the pasture side.

It was a first-time task for me to deal with donkey deposits.  I figured the best tool of choice for this task was a shovel.  My brother has more than one barn of tools.   There were plenty of tools but none of them resembled a shovel.  I tried a rake but that didn’t work well.  When I saw I wasn’t being productive, I wracked my Aspie brain for another way.   What method did I come up with? I can say unequivocally that I did NOT do it the easy way. The first putt was the hardest one to do. After that, it got easier to pick up by hand and throw each one over the fence. I wouldn’t recommend doing this chore without hand gloves.  Oh, based on how many, the donkeys weren’t starving.

A few hours later after the disgusting donkey chore, I noticed my brother’s shovel sitting pretty next to a woodpile.  It was just a few feet from the fence that I had been throwing “donkey putts” over.  I laughed to myself.  Since the chore was history at that point, there was no point in tears.

Other people in my situation would have picked up on the clue that the donkeys were getting out of the pasture and that was a bad thing.  Other people might not have picked up on the clue but they would have called for help.  My brother is a jack-of-all-trades.  He can repair a tractor, tile a bathroom floor, and plant a garden without looking at a manual. He was just a phone call away, but it didn’t enter my mind to call him for help.  I will not ask for help unless I am desperate.  Despite the nauseating chore, I was pleased I had gotten the dunk back where it belonged all by MYSELF!

I wish it was a simple task to ask for help when I’m in unchartered waters.  I feel too anxious to ask for help even from someone who is an expert in whatever those chartered waters are.  I prefer to do everything I can by myself and if I have to learn the hard way, so be it!




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