So I spent the summer tending my garden.
My old man was a gardener. When I was a kid, he bought a house that sat on a huge parcel of land and turned half of it into a vegetable garden. The property came with a bunch of apple, pear and cherry trees, as well as trestles full of grapes, raspberries and blueberries. He then added just about every type of vegetable that would grow in this climate.
I can't tell you how much I hated that garden. Every spring he would push me to till the damned thing, and every spring I would have to hear the, "When I was your age working the farms..." yarn that drove me nuts.
Fast-forward fifty years and there I was, willingly hanging on to a rotor tiller, whacking up the sod in my back yard, merrily turning it into a vegetable garden. I removed the sod, broke up the hard clay earth, mixed in sand and added sheep and cow shit to make it as comfy and cosy as I could for tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, corn and carrots, including a bit of a herb section to round it out. I weeded that bugger two or three times a week, spent a fortune watering it, spent hours trimmed things, staked others, and even made a couple of very cool looking tomato cages to make it all look more interesting and inviting. By the beginning of August we started to get a few juicy samplings as the plants started to come into maturity. This, of course, only served to make me work harder at it. I started pulling weeds more often, turning the soil between the rows bi-weekly and even started talking to them, although none of the rude buggers answered.
Come mid-August, I looked out the window overlooking the backyard and saw this...
I had noticed before I started that our property sat lower than our two neighbours', but didn't realize how low until we had a horrendous rain one Saturday afternoon. When the 5" of water finally disappeared, only two tomato plants and the impatiens that bordered it all survived.
I remember standing there, looking out that window at this lake that was once my garden patch, and hearing my old man laughing...