What needs finishing?

Right. A new gardening week. New gardening goals. What needs finishing? What needs starting? I can't think of much, apart from the same old autumn garden maintenance chores. Official warning - the Head Gardener is a bit bored...

 I love you, silly white cat.
B-Puss is Never Boring...

Monday 13th May

A journal writer should at least try and make weeding and raking up leaves sound exciting, otherwise general readers will switch off in droves. Real gardeners are, naturally, sympathetic to a bit of repetition. Just think of how many garden books get 'properly' published - each new writer is saying the same old thing. But lots of us buy them - guess we need a boost of some new garden energy.

Hello Marjory Fish

Ha! I'm enjoying one little book, found at a second hand sale - a tiny offering about English cottage gardening, with black and white pictures of Wiltshire thatched cottages, written by Marjory Fish. She wrote it nearly fifty years ago. Oops! Fifteen years ago I visited her garden in Somerset, which of course lives on. She passed away back in the nineteen eighties.

She talks a lot about Mr. Bowles - I grow Bowles Golden grass, and some purple Bowles Wallflowers. And she talks in such detail about her plants. I think she was a really passionate plantswoman - definitely not a dreamy dabbler. I would have been scared to meet her!

 Such a strong red colour.
Toadstools are Never Boring...

But back to today. The foster kittens are playing happily, busy unravelling a roll of toilet paper. The Moosey legs have turned into scratching posts, and the Moosey feet are woolly monsters to be attacked and disembowelled. Ouch.

This kitten fostering is quite unsentimental - in fact it is getting a bit boring (oops - there's that word again). Kittens should be outside climbing trees and learning how to be cat company in the garden, not stuck in the Moosey office climbing up the computer cables. Another week, another week, and we'll see.

I think I need to make a list. Another warning for any reader loyal enough to have made it this far - you guessed it - the list will be pretty boring.

Boring List

Rake more pond paddock autumn leaves.
Ha! With my brand new orange plastic Mothers Day rake.
Lay the weekend newspaper in Driveway Garden.
Instant disposal of yesterday's news.
Lay more mulch.
I'm clutching at straws here - could that be rotting hay straws? Hee hee.
Take Cuttings.
OK. It might be the wrong time of the year, but I'll try penstemons, daisies, and pelargoniums. It's something constructive to do.

Crikey - I am even boring myself. This must stop.

 A carpet of gold in the driveway.
Autumn Leaves are Never Boring...

Early Lunchtime...

I've done everything on my list, my spotless white cat provided cat company in the glass-house. But - oops - I am still feeling a bit - flat, stale, stodgy, uninspired, jaded, irksome, monotonous, unreadable? Thanks to Roget's Thesaurus for providing a few different adjectives. So I am off swimming. When I return Rusty the dog needs a bicycle ride, and I need to practice my Albeniz on the piano. More self discipline is required - ditto Rusty the vegetarian dog, pinching all the hens' morning potatoes, broccoli and cauliflower scraps.

Tuesday 15th May

Ha! I'm heaps better. Rusty the dog and I have just had an enlightening conversation (?) as we zoomed around the big country block. I've sorted lots of things out in my head. Warning - some philosophical oddments are about to go public.

The B Word is Banned

Firstly, the B word, in all parts of speech, is banned from this journal. There's nothing more to be said. The state of B-dom does not exist. There is no such thing as B-ing, or being B-ed. If that makes any sense!

 Lovely, lovely yellow.
Graham Thomas Autumn Roses

Secondly, the idea of quantity - that a gardening day is only good if six gruelling gardening hours have been spent. Who says so? Like today - I spent an hour and a half clearing and raking the Frisbee Lawn Border. And if that's all I did, then so be it. I had fun. I love being in my garden for ten minutes or ten hours.

Thirdly, the connection between piano playing and hiking in the mountains. I tried to explain this to Younger Son of Moosey, thinking that he, being a musician, would understand. I was laughed out of my own kitchen.

 In the beech forest.
Head Gardener Hiking

Mountains and Music

When one goes into the mountains, for example on a trip to Camp Saddle, it doesn't matter how 'well' one does - how fast or slow one goes, how happy or grumpy one gets - how easy or how hard the walk is. The journey is the thing, the fresh ideas, new horizons, challenges that the journey brings. And afterwards, the pride of doing - even if it took five hours and really fit, serious trampers can do it in three...

Nor should it matter how 'well' my Albeniz piano playing goes. So far in my quest to play half-decently every piano piece that Albeniz ever wrote I've quasi-mastered two pieces. They're still slow, not fluent enough, and my fingers don't do what my head can hear and my eyes can see. Anyone who has tried to read music written in seven flats will sympathise. But it's the musical journey that matters. If I play the piano for two hours and don't feel any improvement, who cares? Musical journeys and mountain journeys are exactly the same.

Kitten Update

Hissy Puss went to the vet to get her stitches out, and lived up to her name. But she purred again for me today, and I can pick her up. And Ginger Puss almost smooched the Woolly Foot Monster. Dear little things, but such slow progress. Right. I am off to cook tea and play the piano, with my new attitude. At least there are no triple flats in the music...

Wednesday 16th May

More connections - I played the Albeniz piano pieces over and over in my head while out walking today. It meant that I wasn't particularly good company - one cannot really explain why one is being so 'quiet'. But the norwester was howling anyway, and it wasn't easy to converse. We were walking around the cliffs and out to Lyttleton Harbour's entrance.

Now I'm home to do some kitten socialisation. Ginger Puss has been renamed Percy Puss, because he purrs a lot, and Percy is easier to say than Purry. But I'm sorry, Littlest Puss - your name won't be changed. Don't worry - I once knew a supersized tabby called 'Tiny'.

I have bags of newspaper donated by a walking friend - tomorrow morning is thus organised! I'm looking forward to spending the whole day in my garden.