Sunday, August 08, 2010

I Do Loads of Gardening. And a Small Amount Of Thinking. I Preferred the Thinking.

Deciding that the hoe just isn’t cutting it – haha – I get the fork-thing out of the shed, although God knows where it or indeed the hoe came from.

I’ve ignored the borders for seven months and they’ve become an extension of the lawn. I shall have to dig them over.

The lawn itself is not too bad. A couple of shirtless fourteen-year-old radge-packets come around every couple of weeks armed with a strimmer and in return for enough cash to enable them to purchase either ten cigarettes or two bottles of White Lightning they sort the lawn out for me. I’m of the impression that if I ever declined their kind offer of help I would shortly find myself without windows but it’s a good deal nonetheless.

I stab the fork-thing into the ground, promptly hitting a rock and sending shock-waves up my right arm. I swear, drop the spade and then have to jump back so it doesn’t clatter onto my feet.

Picking the fork-thing up, I heroically try again. It sinks into the ground without any trouble and I press my foot down onto the bridge of the fork and sink it completely in. Using both arms I apply a bit of leverage to the fork-handle. Nothing.

Fuck this. I decide to push down on it with everything I have. I promptly rise up, the fork doesn’t move and my legs are thrashing about mid-air just like that paragliding Russian donkey.

I look around. No-one saw. Therefore it did not happen. Excellent.

After two hours of this nonsense I have managed to dig over my borders and have removed anything that might have even looked like a weed. An elderly neighbour wanders by.

Elderly Neighbour:
Oh that looks better. I’ve just got back from the States you know. Bit jet-lagged so I can’t chat.

I’ve never spoken to her in my life. I also notice that, by way of luggage, she is carrying a Co-op carrier-bag and nothing else. I sort-of doubt her tale of jet-setting, but am too exhausted to get into it with her. Besides, she’s doing me no harm.

I get a glass of water that I cannot drink because my arms are fucked and keep trying to pour the liquid over my shoulder instead of in my mouth.

The garden looks very tidy. It also looks a bit barren now. I’ve properly gone to town on the borders and there’s not a living thing left.

It seems that my desire to exert some order over the garden has also robbed it of what made it interesting in the first place – it’s ‘garden-ness’.

Maybe this means something. Perhaps it’s ‘symbolic’.

I shrug to myself and go to the pub.


Anonymous janeway said...

"I look around. No-one saw. Therefore it did not happen. Excellent."

Were you a cat in a former life?

8:35 pm  
Anonymous Em said...

Ha! I think this is the first deep gardening piece I've ever read. It moved me to tears when I pictured you up in the air holding on to your fork thing.

Now must go I've just got back from Bali.

12:36 am  
Blogger Alison Cross said...

Plant some plants to enjoy at different times of the year- literally and symbolically :-)

And today your forearms will be so sore that you can barely raise them to pick your nose....

Ali xx

8:21 am  
Blogger Sewmouse said...

Evergreens are nice.
they do not require much maintenance.
and they look spiffy in winter with multi-color fairy lights on them for the holidays.

Did I mention low maintenance?

3:31 pm  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

Janeway: Ha. I used to have a very short-sighted car who did this all the time. I'd forgotten. Thanks

Em: Again, I'm just glad no-one was there. Did you pop to Bali to do your weekly shop?

Ali: Don't know about the planting. As I'm sure I've mentioned, I'm not a 'creative'-type. Quite the opposite. And my arms were so bad today I could hardly lift my stapler. Hm.

Sew: My garden will NEVER be 'graced' by fairy-lights. But I'm liking the low-maintenance thing.

8:05 pm  
Blogger punxxi said...

TD, they have people to do all that for's worth the price,aka no maintenance ( for you)

11:41 pm  
Anonymous Em said...

Yup, with my recyclable bag made out of regurgitated hemp. That's how we roll down here.

Mmm, perhaps you could grow a border of 'homemade medicine' as my friend's mother used to call it. That way you could invite your new jet-setter friend in for elevenses...

2:11 am  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

Punx: I've considered askiing the radges to do but I don't think I trust them with sharp implements.

Em: That would be a tremendously bad idea. The radges would have the lot of it.

8:08 pm  
Blogger Four Dinners said...

I've just started paying someone to do mine now I'm a driving instructor and have lots of dosh - until I have to pay my taxes then I'm fucked again.

He is completely insane and wild eyed and claims to have been a prisoner of the Mujeradeen or whatever they're called when he was in the army.

Still. My garden looks nice again.

9:09 pm  
Blogger Ellie said...

Flailing like a Russian donkey is no way to spend your leisure time. Unless it's in the pub.

6:57 pm  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

FD: Are all trades-people mental?

Ellie: It's not even good in the pub.

7:54 pm  

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