There was a moment today when I stopped and thought for a while. I moved into the shade since the sun was burning my still a little pale skin. I was sweating like crazy, I was dirty, and I had several small cuts on my legs. And I loved every single moment of it. Of gardening, that is. If five years ago, someone would tell me that my favorite physical exercise and the best way of spending time on weekends will be gardening — I would laugh at his face and ask him why is he wishing me terminal boredom. But here we are, at 48 years old, I love everything about my garden and the plants and flowers and trees and shrubs there.
And all the small visitors to my garden as well — squirrels, birds (woodpeckers, magpies, jays, tits, blackbirds, turtle-doves, and a variety of tiny sparrows), hedgehogs, and even a marten who in winters lives in my outbuilding. And the insects and bees and butterflies and bugs who are busy pollinating and doing their stuff in the grass. Even the neighbor’s cat, who in recent weeks took fancy to visiting the garden and looking for a fight (or maybe a friendship) with my cat, is also welcomed.
And that is hard work to keep everything in order there. And the work is unending. Grass keeps on growing and needs to be mowed. Flowers need care and shrubs need a trim. Trees need pruning and paths need sweeping. And every time I am there doing some work, something catches my eye — this needs to be secured, painted, or replaced, or moved to a different place. And I am always on the lookout for new ideas that might make my garden even better. Or some way to make my work there easier — and, yes — I spent too much money in gardening stores on tools or gizmos I might need.
And I keep my eyes open for what my neighbors are doing in their gardens, and what I can take from them and use in my garden. I also have a couple of people at work with whom I can talk about gardening and search for new ideas and plants based on their expertise. And I am pretty sure that I could make it a full-time job — gardening, that is. I can only do any serious work there on the weekends, and that leaves not much time to just enjoy it. To sit in the shade or have a nap in the grass or follow the ant line to wherever they are going. So now it is only left to figure out what I can do to retire as soon as possible. And I am sure I will be finding a good solution soon.