Friday, July 23, 2021

Foot off the Accelerator

 Disengage warp speed and slooooow. 

This week, I untangled myself from a final couple of things where the stress-to-pay, or, stress-to-benefit ratio was definitely not working in my favour and gave myself some time to, well, just sit. 

Unfortunately, it coincided with a heat wave that I dealt with in the same way I do all heatwaves. With the repeated application of cold, wet flannels around the neck, sleeping in the afternoon, working earlier in the day and the repeated wailing of "oh god, this is horrible, why is this happening, I hate this, why are my feet 3 times their usual size, do we have any ice cream, no don't put that there, it's too hot for that" and so on. 

I am a JOY in a heatwave. 

My northern soul longs for cool breezes, overcast skies and a temperature that does not register higher than 25 degrees. 

The allotment is thriving without any more intervention from me than a watering every couple of days. Abundance is still the watchword and what comes from the plot makes up most of our meals. The giant beetroot and onions become a salad, the courgettes spicy fritters and the potatoes need nothing more than a quick rinse, a quick boil and a simple dressing of olive oil and lemon juice. 

It is perfect.

So I am looking forward to more time on the plot this summer. I'm working enough to pay my half of the bills and to still have time to be up there. The next step is to widen one of the beds, currently occupied by peas that are straggly and seem not to recognise the pea sticks they are right next to, preferring to spread themselves over the ground, despite my best efforts with twine. I've recently been reading up on the no-dig method, so I'l be trying that for a change. 

I have things to read and things to write. I have good food to prepare and a sewing machine to get to grips with. 

I have, most importantly of all, a course to prepare for! Oh yes. I have bitten a bullet and enrolled myself on the RHS Level 2 in Practical Horticulture that starts in September. At the moment this is exciting and I'm pushing all worries to the back of my mind. 

Mainly because I have 2 whole months before it starts. 8 weeks in which to get well. Get the un-working bits of me fixed. Get rested and well. Get rooted. I feel slightly like a plant that's only ever been watered from above. My roots are shallow and easily dislodged. Time to let them go deeper. 

N, because he is capable of occasional flashes of genius, brought me a chair hammock (you sit up in it, not lie down, which I prefer) that fixes onto the Degoba System and swings gently to and fro. I now understand why people spend hours in porch swings in the southern American states. There is something very hypnotic about that gentle to and fro. Whole hours can pass with nothing more done than watching the bees upend themselves in the lilies. 

 view from my hammock

The same lilies that I sniffed a little too vigorously the other day. "Why," I wondered to myself after I'd answered the door. "Did the postman give me such a funny look?"

Answer: lily pollen. All over my nose like I'd thrown a jar of turmeric on it. 

Classy.

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