Saturday, July 26, 2014

Storms, Political and Otherwise


Dave, the energetic garden maven, mail-ordered more plants and they arrived yesterday. We got a red-hot poker, a couple of bee balm plants, some ornamental grass and some lilies of the valley. He planted them in the morning, just in time for drenching afternoon rains that we badly needed.

It's been such a trip to watch Dave in the garden! We've never lived together in a place where we had a garden, so I'm seeing a whole new side to his personality. I'm glad that despite his homebody tendencies he now has a place to be outside, and surprisingly he is quite a perfectionist about how things should look. (I say surprisingly because he's not at all a perfectionist when it comes to the inside of the house. I don't mean that to sound as snarky as it probably does.) He spends a lot of time planning, weeding, trimming, planting and dead-heading flowers (even sometimes before they're really what I would call "dead," which I rib him about). He gets such joy out of it all.

My only reservation is that this really isn't our garden. I hate to see him invest too much time and money in something that we may have to give up in the next year or two, depending on the whims of our landlord. I try to gently remind him of that, while not deflating his enthusiasm. Debbie Downer.


I took Olga to Hampstead Heath yesterday (not the West Heath!) and on the way back we got caught in the first of our afternoon storms. So I ducked into a little sidewalk cafe in Hampstead and had an amazing, artistic coffee (above) and a lunch of scrambled eggs, smoked salmon and toast. Olga, exhausted from our outing in the park, snoozed beneath my chair as three people at a table next to me loudly discussed Israel's conflict with the Palestinians in Gaza. (If there's ever a conversation you don't want to have loudly and in public, it's anything to do with Israel and the Palestinians.) They came down squarely on the side of Israel and its right to defend itself. I was somewhat annoyed with their volume but I refrained from making any indication that I heard them (how could I not?) and eventually the rain subsided enough that Olga and I could get home.

I had an unsettled night's sleep. I slept very lightly and I was up early. We have a busy weekend ahead and then I'm off to Florida on Tuesday, so my mind was swirling with all the things left to do -- my usual pre-travel anxiety!

(Top photo: Houses on a street near our flat, one of my photos for the Bleeding London project.)

10 comments:

Elizabeth said...

It sounds like a pleasant day, except for that overheard conversation. And I agree -- if there's anything NOT to discuss loudly, it's that mess, and it's difficult to discuss it WITHOUT getting loud!

JennieB said...

What a magnificent fushia growing beside the equally attractive doors!

Ms. Moon said...

I love that photo.
And hey- let Dave do his thing. Even if you do have to move, consider the money and time well spent. All hobbies require some money and lots of time and this is such a good hobby. He's outdoors, he's got his hands in the dirt, he's creating something beautiful that you can enjoy together. I think it's wonderful! And maybe practice in case you ever buy a place.

ellen abbott said...

any money and time spent in the garden no matter how long or short you live there is not a waste if enjoyment is gotten out of it while you are there.

Linda Sue said...

Agree with Ellen, Time and money is never wasted when it goes into the garden. Lately I have to travel with ear plugs, Not sure how it happened that people became so increasingly unreasonable. I have been upset with Israel for a long time now. Not to mention this country!!! Bullies of the universe! Keep your focus local- DAve garden food and of course the best of all OLGA!Ear plugs are also good.

Sharon Anck said...

I so wish I had the talent to grow things. Of course growing things in the desert is a bit of a challenge but, I can't even grow things inside the house.
I wonder if a sense of guilt is what puts so many people squarely on the side of Israel. I find so many of their actions abhorrent. My parents always taught me "two wrongs don't make a right".

e said...

I would love to be able to have my hands in the dirt and make something lovely...If you're going to be around, let me know. I'll save you a piece of birthday cake!

The Bug said...

I concur with everyone else - let Dave play & even if you move the next folks will be delighted :)

I don't like it when I can overhear conversations no matter what it's about - it keeps all my energy with the loud strangers & I can't enjoy whatever I'm doing. Yes, this means I don't go out a lot - ha!

37paddington said...

You're wild outside and precise inside, Dave is wild inside and precise outside--sounds like a perfect match if you ask me. Even if Dave gets that garden to perfection and you have to then move, it will never be a waste. The tending of the garden seems to give him deep peace and satisfaction and that is worthwhile for whatever duration. Plus you never know what's next, only that no experience is ever a waste.

So many of our blog peeps, including me, are traveling this week. I know just what you mean about pre trip anxiety. Have a great time in Florida!

37paddington said...

ps i loved your comment about the butterfly garden as a metaphor. thank you.