Thursday, April 29, 2010

I have never had so many good ideas day after day as when I work in the garden.
~John Erskine

At 6:30 Wednesday morning I picked an armful of lilacs to bring to work. My fingers were stinging from the frosty air as I cut the woody stems and stuffed them into a pail of water. It was a beautiful morning and even though a fine film of frost lay over everything, the clear sunshine and vivid colors couldn’t help but lift the spirits.

Something that always strikes me on cold mornings when the temperature is below freezing is that even lilacs have no fragrance. An hour after being placed in the warm offices the lilac scent is heavy throughout the building. For me, the fragrance is the best thing about lilacs. They are lovely to look at but noting compares to walking into the garden on a spring afternoon and smelling that teasing scent on every stray breeze.

Perhaps one of the most appealing things about gardening is that simple chores free the gardener's conscious to float out over a strange array of subjects. Outside in the fresh air, the mind is swept clean and tends to wander down seldom used thought paths.

I have some happy news. My father finally came home from the therapy center Tuesday. I can’t tell you how much the family worried about this event. We weren’t sure he was up to living without skilled help and supervision. At Cor Mariae, Dad seemed so helpless and frail, but home on his own turf, he has made a miraculous change. He was in and out his back door a dozen times just sitting in the sunshine and walking slowly along the edge of his woodland garden while one of us told him what was blooming and tried to make word pictures he could ‘see’ in his mind.

Thank you everyone for your good wishes and kind comments about Dad while he was so sick.