Posted by: lmcg1 | May 13, 2008

Spring is slowly arriving; memories

On the weekend, I finally got out into the garden, to start the cleanup process. I had a yard person come and do a general clearing of the old perennials, plus vacuum and aerate the grass. I can’t handle the dust anymore, so it is worth it to have that done. This yard person wasn’t a gardener I don’t think because a couple of shrubs got hair cuts in the process. Hopefully they will be back.

Spring is late and slow in arriving this year, and we certainly won’t have the spring flower display like last year. Although we had a good amount of snow, once it melted we had a lot of cold and ice that limited the spring flowers, even the bulbs. The leaves are just starting to show on the trees, and the blossoms are starting to come out on the nanking cherry trees. I have a few tulips, but won’t have a lot this year. The grape hyacinth are out – cut a few to bring in. They always remind me of my grandmother Wooster, even though she died when I was about six. She had them, as well as icelandic poppies in her garden in White Rock and I always loved their scent. I also remember that she made wonderful blackberry pies, with one of those china birds in the middle to hold up the pastry. It is funny how something as simple as a flower triggers memories from 50+ years ago.

We lived in her house with Grandpa for a year or so after she died while my parents built a new house on top of the hill. The grandparents’ house was along the waterfront, just above the White Rock. I have all kinds of memories: the sound of the train at night; the big old stump that had termites in it, and crane flies, which I hated; the hyacinths in the garden; the outhouse, before the bathroom was added; the old wood stove; learning to sew on a Singer treadle machine; the pump for water in the kitchen, cold only; the dipper for drinking water; having a bath in a square metal tub in the kitchen ( I have one just like it still); my younger brother having whooping cough; the embroidered picture of a crane above the fireplace; listening to the big old radio in the chair by the fireplace; the veranda; hanging out flags on Dominion Day; wicker chairs; the attic; the standing mirror; the bedrooms; big beach stones that were heated in the stove to warm your bed. I bet I could draw a lot of the things still.

The house is long gone, burned in a fire in about 1958. A few objects survived – I have a few of pieces of cut glass that survived. But the house is still there in my head. Plus some old photos. There may be some painting potential there. Hmm.

I hope to get out into the garden again for the next few days, to finish the cleanup, to dig out some old stuff and clear out some overgrown areas. Always things to do in a garden! Nice to get out, down and dirty!

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