Dirt in My DNA

It felt like nap weather.

But I had an appointment with myself to put on grubbies, and between the rain showers, work in the front yard, continuing the weeding and trimming.  I can still see the clods of topsoil coming up with the oxalis which I was pulling out by the fist-fulls and chucking into the waiting wheelbarrow by the sidewalk.  The dark soil, the pale lime green shoots and stems…the crunch of slightly composted leaves from fall…

All of a sudden I was genuinely happy.  It surprised me.  “Why does working like a dog in the dirt bring me joy?” I wondered.  On the Scottish side, I come from farmers and tough people who traveled to new places, earned the money to buy land and worked hard to make it produce.  They were also orators, preachers on horseback, with a few artists thrown in there.  So, yes, gardening is therapy for me.  It connects me.  The cleaned up yard, the order satisfies me and I know that the spring leafing out will look good.

But I think that happiness was about something else too.  I was finally getting to do just exactly what I wanted, and that felt nice. Dirt, or no.  Like it was my free choice and my time.  So many weekends even have been committed to events and the work week sure doesn’t afford me much unstructured time.

So, I was weeding and pruning another bush back, admiring my artistry.  And the cool, quiet afternoon stayed the same time all day, with only a few neighbors walking dogs by and no interruptions.

I realize there is something aesthetic about gardening and urban farming that I forgot over winter.  Healthy plant life is clean and vibrant, and wonderfully designed.

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One thought on “Dirt in My DNA”

  1. Dirt in my DNA, too. I think you nailed it when you connected “free choice” time to a happy feeling. So much of our time is committed. A little free, unstructured time is good!! You made me want to get outside too!

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