Friday, August 1, 2008

Summer Luvin

This year, the dog days of summer are flooding me with nostagia for my own childhood and a sense of euphoria in my own backyard.

So much of my days this summer resemble my life back on the farm: running barefoot on the warm, somewhat crispy grass with the sound of livestock in the background; running cars through newly-built sandbox roads; and getting unintentionally soaked in an impromptu splash fight while watering the flowers.

I'm almost absurdly joyful about my garden. We've had green beans nearely every day this week, along with excellent home grown coleslaw, sauteed squash, and a few cherry tomatoes. I wasn't a big fan of the beets, but everything else has tasted wonderful... and made me unduly proud.

I wonder if every farmer is as skeptical in early spring, when the tiny seeds get dusted with a bit of dark soil and sprinkled gently with water. It seems so unlikely that anything will happen. Every year I find myself reporting that the garden has indeed been planted, but who knows what we'll get.

Then I'm giddy when everything sprouts up. It keeeps growing, with just a bit of fertilizer and some stakes in the right places, usually quite a bit of weeding.

Suddenly it's July, and I'm vining half a dozen plants up half a dozen other, sturdier plants or the fence or a homemade teepee featuring used door frames found on Craig's List.

Finally when the first harvest comes in, with the promise of an endless and overwhelming bounty to come, I feel as though I should package it up and send it to my mom so that she might have something of mine to put on her fridge.

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