"It was imprudent of us, in the first place, to become authors. We could have become something regular, but we managed not to.
We were lucky, but we were also determined." Roy Blount Jr

"I don’t change the facts to enhance the drama. I think of it the other way round, the drama has got to fit the facts,
and it’s your job as a writer to find the shape in real life."
Hilary Mantel

Friday, April 18, 2008

From My Garden

Yesterday's warm weather--over 70 degrees--encouraged these early-flowering daffodils to open.

I spent 5 hours in my biggest rose garden. I raked leaves, turned the earth, pulled weeds, divided perennials in the two largest sections. Also I pruned my damask roses, rosa canina, the floridundas and hybrid perpetuals, and whatever else I left undone last time round.

While working with my garden claw beneath the gallica rose Tuscany, I disturbed my old friend Mr. Toad. It was our first encounter of the gardening year.

He is always in exactly the same spot, and I always manage to disturb his rest. His first hop startles me, but never surprises me--I expect to see him. The rest of the time I'm working in his area, we try to keep out of each other's way, with varying degrees of success.

I've prepped some of the places where new roses will go, but there's more to be done. I'm eradicating two pathways in order to extend garden space, so I'll need to amend the soil when I dig up the paths.

I did something I'd never done before--I brought dogs into the front yard while I worked. Normally I leave them in their fenced part of the backyard. Or I put them on the deck. But we haven't set up a table or umbrella yet, so there's no shade on the deck. The house casts a lovely big shadow in front--the reason there's still a snow berm.

Our dogs are always behind a fence or on a leash--they aren't permitted to roam. All the long tie-out paraphernalia is up at the cottage, so I strung a lot of leashes together to allow freedom of movement while still keeping them out of my way.

At first they were confused, thinking we were supposed to go for a walk. Then they settled down, and spent the afternon napping in the sun, sitting in the shade, cooling off on the snow berm, rolling in the grass, or sniffing the places where the chipmunks hide.

A good time was had by all.

I was typically immoderate and wore myself out. I used a different set of muscles--digging muscles--then I did the other day. But I did wear better protective clothing, except for the Swiss cheese gloves, so I didn't get nicked and pricked.

Wish I could be out there again today but I can't. I'll explain later.

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