There is never a dull moment in my world. Actually, no that isn’t true – there have been plenty of dull moments this spring while I wait for my recently almost dry soil to drain again after yet another deluge and to be honest it is as dull as watching paint dry. But we haven’t had an inundation in over a week so I’m going to boldly say “I think we are passed that nonsense now and are on our way to better summer weather.” I hope that doesn’t come back and bite me.
But there are moments of excitement to be had that makes the tedium pale in comparison. And you can’t get more exciting that yesterday. The police came!
Just to back up the story a wee bit, the last we spoke, I had come home from a day trip to a spot of flooding. Which of course was followed by a lot of the waiting I mentioned above. And with every day I would venture out to test the soil to see if it was good enough to work. As much as was desperate to get on and sort out the garden, my soil quality comes first and so I waited. But my heart was anxious. I had a garden visit scheduled for one week and one day after that most recent flood situation and I wanted the garden to look perfect for my visitors.
Throw in some school holidays, a family visit and a 12th birthday party and a head cold – going on a two hour each way, day road trip with a kid with a cold wasn’t one of our best ideas. Having said that staying at home and watching the rain would have been upsetting – all these things conspired to make gardening a no-go activity. And I had to make myself realise there is no such thing as a perfect garden. It is a misnomer. Vegetable gardens are working gardens and there is always something that needs to be done. They are never finished. Chuck in some unruly nature and there you have it – a garden that is what it is.
I managed to squeeze in snatches of time here and there so I wasn’t too ashamed of the garden when my guests arrived. I’ve had guests before in my garden and I love showing it off. But these ones were special. They were coming a long way and they were coming by bus! I’d never had a bus tour before.
I discussed it with the organiser and said we’d had large trucks etc down our driveway before – not to mention the very large truck that finally removed Hubby the Un-Gardener’s very large boat from our backyard after many months of overstaying its welcome while having in Hubby the Un-Gardeners words “a bit of a tidy up… “. But we decided to leave it up the bus driver to decide – he could always check it out from above on Google Maps. So, it was decided months ago that my garden would be the last stop in a wonderful garden tour itinerary for a bus load of keen gardeners from ‘up north.’
Finally, the day came and with a fresh mow and a few last minute weeds pulled, the garden was ready for public scrutiny. We’d come a long way from those waterlogged days and was almost in a state of respectability. As I stood back and felt a little proud of my poor bedraggled garden, the bus arrived and turned into our driveway. But it turned a little too sharply and got wedged. Because of the angle and the position of the door, my guests got off the bus and waited on the road until everyone was out and the door was shut. Then they squeezed past the gate and I welcomed them into my garden, leaving the poor bus driver to figure out what to do – with the bus not budging and its back end blocking one lane of the road in front of our house. Fortunately, it isn’t a very busy road.
I ushered the guests into my garden and we had a chat and a tour and a cuppa tea and a pleasant afternoon was whiled away while waiting for the bus to become unstuck. Their visit was only supposed to be an hour and a half but they were able to soak up the sun in my garden for another hour more. They were such a lovely group and no one moaned or complained, but I think that is the nature of gardeners – they are the loveliest people you would every want to meet.
It wasn’t so calm and tranquil out on the road – a passing tractor snapped a chain trying to drag it out and then the police arrived – just a couple of cars – one to manage the situation and the other to direct the infrequent traffic. There were traffic cones and everything. The school bus sailed past three times on its route to collect and deliver children and my kids and their friends were rather amused at the situation. Eventually a heavy duty tow truck arrived, the police stopped traffic at both ends of our road and three cars had to do a detour. Effortlessly the truck removed the bus from its steadfast position and the gardening folk let out a collective “Hoorah!”
Under police escort they were guided across our not so busy road and they boarded their bus with yet another story to tell of a stuck bus on one of their exciting garden visits (yes it had happened to them before!) As they waved goodbye and headed off into the evening traffic towards the city, and the police collected their cones, we wandered back into the garden and counted the day as another successful garden visit. I’m looking forward to the next one – but maybe we won’t do parking for buses in future.
Come again soon – the last frost date is days away and the real planting can get started.
Sarah the Gardener : o)