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The Garden

by | Oct 1, 2018

I think life is a journey, it’s a challenge to say I’m happy where I am. We tend to forget the little things that fill life with meaning. I mean who could possibly be happy with flies around but, in this case, they mean something else. Some of these pictures of me are old, I suppose I’m older now, and the blog is definitely autobiographical so here’s another one. By the way, I have always loved this song by Van Morrison, “When the leaves come falling down.” Perhaps the most beautiful song ever. I know I didn’t do justice to the refrain below, but maybe one day I will.

Listen to the song: Van Morrison- When The Leaves Come Falling Down

Follow me down, follow me down, follow me down
To the place between the garden and the wall
Follow me down, follow me down
To the space between the twilight and the dawn
Van Morrison

In the countryside, I can look out expansively at my world. What counts is that you can let your eyes extend out and take in the movement of the clouds, the changing patterns of the weather, the wind as it moves caressing your face, and exactly where the sun rises in the eastern sky. You also see the endless stream of planes carrying their cargo to Palma and then to points unknown. Everyone looking for a few moments of respite, a chance to forget or enjoy or both. And me, well, I feel grateful to live away from the hustle and bustle of the city, I’m protected in a way and I have time to think. Everything is not perfect though and I still have to throw myself in the middle so to speak, when activity takes me to Palma or the airport. All these things and more I notice from my porch at my home in Mallorca.

It’s wonderful to live on an island, people seem to have more time for each other, the little things matter like a smile lighting up a face or a short conversation. At our house there are flies, mosquitos and sometimes bats wondering into the house. We have two dogs: Moma, our guard dog, and Hans. Moma doesn’t bite but she doesn’t let any sound get by her, calling out her warning when someone walks by or the sheep stray too close to the fence. Then there is Hans, our new cream-colored male Labrador of not yet two years old. We’re waiting…patiently, for him to grow up. Whose idea was it anyway to bring home this always hungry, chewing machine, who has to have something in his mouth all the time, and who is constantly pleading with you to play with him? I know it was for my granddaughter; what better thing than to have the friendliest dog in the world while growing up, but it’s still a cruel joke. I thought I knew about patience but I was wrong. Ummm, and at my age.

Beauty surrounds us, but usually we need to be walking in a garden to know it.

Rumi

At least I have my potted flowers to remind me that I live in the country and I can have these things. I like to look at them. I had to place them in high up places because of Hans and, well, that’s the way it is. But I have them. I experiment buying new plants that I know nothing about but I like their flowers. For example, the Vinca or Periwinkle. It might be easy for some to care for her, but I’ve bought maybe six plants this summer and all have died. So, I definitely don’t know anything about her and what she needs.

Then there are Impatiens, they usually do well with me as long as they aren’t out in direct sunlight during the hot summer months. Everyone will tell you that they like shade, but now I see that they like a little bit of light or sun if their flowers are to come out. When conditions are right, we all flourish – plants and people.

On the island, we have about three months of intense excessive heat, at least for me. I suppose that’s why people come here from the north, because the weather is only supportable if you’re at the beach. Nevertheless, too much heat and sun aren’t good for flowers; they dry up quickly, don’t do well with constant watering and generally just shrink up and wait for better times to show their beauty. Ideally, it wouldn’t go above 25 degrees centigrade and we’d all be happier…maybe.

People too need the right conditions to grow in, to be able to feel good about themselves. We’re kind of like the plants and flowers – too much sun and too much heat isn’t conducive to the human spirit. Loud shouts of discontent and adamant calls for change; make our spirits wilt and hide just like flowers in the month of August.

We need air that we can breathe; where we aren’t afraid and don’t have to escape inside from the fierce rays of the sun that offer no truce. Yes, there will always be the weeds to pick, the grass to cut, and the daily checking to see who and what needs water. That is just part of life in the country. But have you ever wondered what it takes for Begonias to be lush and vibrant, or Petunias, Marigolds, Geraniums and the same Impatiens? They’re all different and will take some care and understanding on your part if you are to bring out the flower that is inside of them.

Each one of us, you and I both, need special care and attention. You might have to experiment with me to see under which conditions I flourish, and are able to bring out the best in me. You have my vote of confidence and I promise I’ll do the same.

There is a place, a secret place, between the garden and the wall as the poet said, where just the two of us exist. We could run there and hide like children and just be ourselves. There we could maybe lean sideways against the wall and gaze infinitely at each other; and I could appreciate your beauty in the garden of my flowers.

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