I slowly discovered that hitting the chisel on an angle made things easier. As did brushing out all the debris before each set of blows. I also got to learn how to chisel away exposed mortar much faster… and to also use the chisel as a lever, to further loosen (and in some cases pry out) bricks.
I never really knew what the term for the patch of ground between the sidewalk and the city street was, but apparently it’s “parkway.” This is an interesting bit of land, in that it technically belongs to the city, but we can gussy it up as we like. In fact, I think it’s somewhat expected that we tend to this area… as it’s “ours” to take care of, even though it belongs to the city.