A few weeks ago a I ran across the following post on a friend's blog: "On gardening (I hate it)". This took me by surprise. How could anyone hate gardening?! Her partial answer: "I hate sweating (which explains my related issue with exercising), I hate getting dirty, and I hate kneeling and pulling and hurting my back." Those are some of the very things I love about gardening!
All winter I spend the morning in our office/workout room getting 20 minutes of exercise while I listen to lots of ads and a little commentary on the radio. I love that as soon as the weather warms up, I can pass up that dreary routine to go outside to get my heart rate and weightlifting going while I till the ground or move rocks around for two hours. Sweating is especially rewarding when I can see the fruits of my labors all around the yard. I don't mind getting dirty, though I have to wear gloves so I don't get dirt under my fingernails--me no likey the idea of pin worms. And though it's not fun to have a sore back, it does feel good to know I've worked hard, in contrast to those days that I just sit around and eat chocolates. ;o) Truly, I actually prefer the heavy landscaping work to the wimpy weeding "work".
This year has been particularly enjoyable because we finally had some money to buy some plants. I made drawings of my dreams for the yard when we moved here five years ago. Now I am starting to see how those sketches look in 3D! For the sake of our budget, I try to restrain myself and remind myself that I have years to put everything in...but it's hard to wait! Kent keeps telling me that we have other projects that take precedence, including a mortgage that we want to pay off. So I've decided that whatever money I can raise on ebay will go towards my landscape. (If any of you want dance shoes, check out auctions listed by not_so_contrary, and watch how my garden grows!) Maybe I'll get some junk--EUC of course--cleared out and some tulips put in!
Another favorite thing about gardening is all the observing I get to do. I get to watch the sunrise turn the clouds from gray to pink to orange. I get to see the hummingbirds and bees at work. I get to say hi to joggers and dog-walkers. Sometimes I make discoveries: did you know that cats burp? Last week I was filling a #10 can with water to drench my rose bush, and one of the cats who lives here (I still consider them strays, though they adopted our house years ago) started lapping at the stream from the hose. So I filled the can to the brim so she could reach it easily. She was thirsty! When she had lapped away 1/4 inch or so, she turned away and made two soft coughing sounds. The cat had burped! I never would have learned that while pumping iron to the beat of talk radio.
In conclusion, gardening is good exercise and it produces a thing of beauty. Since gardening is not for everyone, let's strike a deal. After we're all resurrected and exalted, I'll take care of creation day four, Mindy and you other animal lovers can have day five, and Charlotte (mother of six) can have day six. But be warned, people who hate gardening end up like this:
Thanks Charlotte! (Sorry I didn't ask for the photo rights.)