Work. Not Work.

June 11, 2015 at 3:01 pm 2 comments

Spring was late this year; the garden’s not going to have time to fill in properly, I told myself. The instructions to plant things 10 inches apart can’t possibly take into consideration this heavy, clay soil, I told myself.

She really just wanted to play in the dirt, you’re saying to yourself.


Last Sunday, I decided my place needed a few more flowers. And so, like an indulgent granny, I slipped myself a 20 and drove back to the local nursery for the third (maybe fourth?) time this year. Returned home and spent the entire day outside. Planting, weeding, fertilizing, moving this plant here and that plant there, wheeling around the wheel barrow, and generally just futzing around in a state of dippy bliss.

Smiles relax every worry line. I hum involuntarily. I stop and smell roses, literally. When I’m out there in the garden, it’s like someone turns on the auto focus. Or turns down the gravity. Or gives me a peek behind stage. And in that little glimpse of Real, I am as certain as Mary Poppins, as graceful as Ginger Rogers, as wise as Obi-Wan, as content as Baloo.

All is well.

I was finishing up with the watering as one of my neighbors was bringing his garbage to the opposite curb. “You’re working too hard,” he called out.

What went through my mind was, Work?! This isn’t work! Sitting at a desk is work. Editing a novel is work. An old dog learning the tricks of publishing is work. Drying dishes is work. Folding laundry is work. Raising cage-free dust bunnies is work. Grocery shopping is work. Driving in the South Hills of Pittsburgh is work. Scooping the litter box is work. But this? This is lovely. This is playtime.

This is filthy, sweaty, smelly, sunburnt, life-preserving awesome!

Ginger Rogers wanted to do a rousing number with lots of brass and some Busby Berkeley chorus girl flower arrangements. But I just smile-chuckle-nod-waved because that’s how you communicate in a brief, holler-across-the-street sort of way. And he was already heading back inside anyway.

And now, I’m back in the midst of the work week. As I look over my to-do list here at my desk, which faces the window, which overlooks the front garden, I . . . uh . . . you know? I think I see some weeds. Maybe I should get out there and check on that.

Entry filed under: Life Preservers. Tags: , , , .

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. joeythebuddhist  |  June 12, 2015 at 12:52 am

    Love this picture!


  • 2. B. Schmidt  |  June 12, 2015 at 9:59 am

    Thanks! I sell that pic and some others. See link below. Or if you want something different from what’s available there I also sell prints on a one-off basis. (Not that you said anything about wanting to buy anything and not to be pushy or anything. :) Just mentioning.



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