After writing a novel, I emerged from my cave, craving ice cream, conversation and sunlight. A Moose Tracks sundae equaled ice cream therapy. Hubby, waiting for a coherent word from me, took grunts as a portent of better things.
I drank in sunlight. Summer morning air. Green, living things.
Unfortunately, most were weeds. Thousands of Klingon sticker weeds had conquered garden and flower beds.
A flabby author’s perfect therapy: a down-and-dirty battle to rescue oppressed plants. To arms, garden warrior!
I donned grubby jeans, T-shirt, baseball cap and tennis shoes, all of which remembered the turn of the millennium.
Hubby: “No PJs? You’re wearing real clothes?”
For him, it was a long novel.
We bathed in sunscreen as if with war paint, then took up weapons: hoe, rake, hand spade — and cushy kneeling pad.
The sticker weeds jeered at my weak knees. Their lackeys — purslane, marestail, purple deadnettle and, of course, dandelions — joined in. (I researched weed names on a Purdue website. Battle Rule #1: know your enemies.) But I didn’t look up Klingon sticker weeds. I knew dangerous aliens when I saw them.
Weed phasers would have been nice additions to our weaponry cache. But Hubby struck vicious blows, hoeing squash and cucumbers. I attacked beleaguered tomato plants’ foes.
Tanned cyclists zoomed past. Hubby eyed them longingly, but continued valiant efforts. Ponytailed runners wearing designer attire and perfect makeup stared as if they hoped what I had wasn’t catching.
Whew! After a morning-long battle, we showered, wolfed sandwiches and Hubby went to work.
I peered out the back door, wanting to savor the view of our perfect garden again.
My jaw dropped.
An overloaded mulberry tree branch had dropped like a bomb, bending tomato plant cages. Smaller branches, leaves and mashed berries smothered veggie rows.
The mulberry tree was in cahoots with Klingon sticker weeds!
Such perfect timing. The moment Hubby left the driveway, the tree had unleashed its barrage.
I yanked at the big branch. It barely budged.
“You think you’ve won, Klingon-sticker-weed lover? Well, you’ve got another thing coming.”
A giant swoosh of anger can fuel a woman. Armed with hedge trimmers, saws and my husband’s old Boy Scout hatchet, I reduced my enemy to sawdust. Well, not exactly. But by afternoon’s end, I’d removed most of the mess.
Superwoman still couldn’t move the big branch. When Hubby returned, he sawed it into sections and hauled them out.
Once again, I savored the sight of tidy rows of vegetables.
Ah, the sunset. The fragrant summer evening. Green things that were legal.
A tired writer’s perfect therapy.
Exactly what she needed to send her back to her laptop forever!
Your Extraordinary Ordinary: Does gardening relax you or wipe you out?