I take joy from many things. Here are just a few of them:
Gardening, you’ll notice, is not on that partial list. It’s not even on the full list. That’s because I despise it. My total disdain for the activity was likely brought on by a combination of my couch potato tendencies as a kid (when all of my little friends were outside, I was inside practicing my Ubbi Dubbi skills) and the fact that my sister and I spent many weekends pulling weeds out of the landscaping around our house and especially under that godforsaken magnolia tree, whose lower branches were left untrimmed so we had to do our work crouched over in a position similar to that of a fetus. Funny, that’s also the position we both assume to this day when the topic of “gardening” comes up in conversation.
I couldn’t put it off any longer, though. My “landscaping” in the front yard–and I put that in quotes because honestly, nobody would really call it that at this point–had become overgrown and full of weeds. It was also full of a variety of small trees that were dropped there in seed form by birds, eventually growing not quite tall enough to look like a plant that belonged there but too big to easily extract from the ground. My section of tall grass was starting to grow in for the year and I hadn’t bothered to go out and chop down the old, wheat-colored remnants of last summer.
The final motivator for me to get out there was my friend Jen, who started tweeting and blogging about her garden after a long, cold, bitter–well, it actually wasn’t that bad this year–winter. She loves to garden, and has worked so consistently on hers that I’m pretty sure she can just snap her fingers and her flowers grow while she hangs out with the birds and other local wildlife, like this.
I spent two brutal hours out there, and it wasn’t pretty. First, I cut the old tall grass out. Funny, it didn’t look much better.
So that was annoying.
Also annoying? The four-legged member of the family who was very vocal about her disgust at being brought back inside after she wouldn’t behave herself on the leash in the front yard.
After sending multiple tweets out about how I was considering setting my garden on fire and just starting over, like this one:
I decided that the garden wasn’t going to magically transform all by itself.
As I got busy pulling weeds, D stepped into the back of the garden area as if he was on a mission.
“What are you doing?” I asked.
He replied, “Oh, just getting this.” He held up a gardening glove from the pair I had been searching for before getting started. (I had finally asked Jim to let me use a pair of his work gloves. The day only has so many hours in it, you know!)
I laughed a little too hard, perhaps, when D said, “Yeah, that glove has been laying there for two years.”
First of all, I don’t think it’s been two years since I’ve done anything out there.
Okay, I guess it has. But more importantly, what happened to the other glove?
I found it an hour later, very close to where its partner had been.
I just left it there for a while so I can think about whether it needs to be thrown away or if I want to stick my hand in there.
After nearly hitting myself in the head with the shovel handle while digging out those little trees, getting covered in mini burrs from something that was probably ragweed, and stabbing my fingers repeatedly with the thorns from my wayward climbing rose, I threw in the towel for today.
Green thumb? Absolutely not. Unless you’re talking about it being green in regards to my envy of people who have professional landscapers.