Thursday, August 18, 2022

The Hand of God

Wednesday was HOT! At 10:00 am, as I began working on cleaning and tidying up the shed, it was already 28°. Man, it was nasty, but I got it done. It was a horrible mess and now, like the rest of P.P. it’s in great shape. I took a ton of stuff to GIRO, our recycling agency, and then came home to tidy up the studio and to get rid of the many little piles of pulled weeds and harvested forest fall that were scattered around the yard. I was seriously sweaty; a cool shower was perfect.

Loading up the car and unloading everything at GIRO, and the cleaning and tidying of the shed and studio had me wasted by 1:30, so I came into my nice cool home with all the doors and windows open and all my ceiling fans on high and started a new Bruno novel. It felt fabulous to be back in the Dordogne again—and refreshingly cool, too!

But I didn’t stick to my book. Once I was cool and felt refreshed, I went back to work in the gardens. The back yard is almost entirely shaded during the mid-day. It gets sunny and hot again in the back around 3:30. Man, it was hot. It was 35°! I couldn’t get to cleaning up the studio. There was too much to do in the yard, so I’ll work on the studio today. Like you care.

So, at 3:30 I was back with Bruno, and very, very comfortable on my chaise longue and with Cherries for snacks. Yum. It was lovely in the house. It was wonderfully cool, and so the evening was a treat of delicious stir fry and television. 

Last night I watched The Hand of God on Netflix. It’s the second time I’ve watched it and my God I love that movie. Nothing really happens, but we watch nothing happen to our protagonist who’s surrounded by the most garish and wonderful people ever caught on film. Yes, that’s an exaggeration, but I love the movie. I love the colours, the cinematography, the characters—everything. 

I ask myself why? Why does it give me so much pleasure to stand and admire my yard?

I see an empty private space that is beautiful to be in. The lawn signifies management, the florals signify enhancement, the presence, everywhere, of native plants (mostly Salal and Ferns), indicate balance of order and nature. And the fence gives me a sense of privacy and security. What I see is inviting. Its rawness, the dryness and the thinness of the grass reminds me of Lighthouse Park, the less manicured parts of Stanley Park, and the mountain parks surrounding Vancouver—each a source of many memories. 

Secondly, I am shocked to love something so much that evolved with absolutely no planning. I had no vision of what I would do, but I had all the time it took to get the garbage and the years of forest fall off the top of the land. Then, I started doing what seemed practical. Soil is expensive, so I wanted to do a lot of lawn—seeded on shallow soil. 

The gardens just happened: where there was too much Salal to deal with; another the part of the yard to which I transplanted all the Ferns that I found as I cleaned the land; another because there was a large natural garden of Campion. And so on. All I did was clean up the yard really, plus adding colour with trees and perennials.

It was all instinct. I wanted something pretty and tidy. And I’m happy with all I’ve done.

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