This lockdown has been a bit of a strange creature for me as far as productivity and getting stuff done goes. I have to confess a lot of time has been spent in a bewildered state. While my life hasn’t changed all that much, I work from home, Hubby the Un-Gardener works from home and it felt like the school term hadn’t been going that long so having the kids around just feels normal, like it was in the summer holidays. Thank goodness they are teens and self-managing. Although I do feel like I have been a bad parent as unlimited screen time has been the default activity. We have managed a few family walks on the beach as it is close enough – ie on our back doorstep, to be considered local.
The first half of the lockdown did feel a little bit like those first few weeks of the school holidays. The weather was lovely and, while there was work to be done, it was hard to focus. Ordinarily this would be due to the Christmas build up, but this time it was the anxious watch of life around us and wondering if our bubble will be breached by this totally unexpected situation.
While work has been a bit of an anchor to keep things real in an unreal world, things in the second half have shifted slightly. The weather has changed. It may have felt like summer going in but coming out it feels like winter. It has been a long four weeks. The kids are now working remotely for their schoolwork and it seems to be going well, yay for engaged and motivated kids who have a desire to learn. Hubby the Un-Gardener’s business is starting to pick up again. In the early days no one was thinking much about their careers, but as we approach what looks like the end, those who have lost their jobs are beginning to approach us to get their CV’s done. (Shameless plug: if anyone needs a new CV to give them the edge over all the others looking for work in the coming weeks and months check out our other business CV.CO.NZ – at the very least it will keep Hubby the Un-Gardener busy and out of my projects.)
But for me as Sarah the Gardener, it has been a little hard. The garden really doesn’t need me much at this time of year, so it has been a little hard to throw myself into it. We had a great project to start off with the shed shelf project that went remarkable well and then I harvested almost everything left in the garden and so all that is there is beds filled with the dying remains of the summer season. I don’t know why I am reluctant to remove them. Possibly with thought that once it’s done there will be nothing else to do. This garden has been designed in such a low maintenance way that it has almost become automatic, rather than the creative joys of gardening in those heady days of not knowing what I was doing. It is almost like the garden has become a job, that doesn’t pay very well – unless the global currency changes to zucchini, then I’d be rich indeed.
Other things that incited a game of hide and seek with my mojo has been the anxiety of the situation hasn’t been good for my MS and so most days I’m running at probably 80% energy levels – sometimes much less. And we are in the middle of another great storm, with winds howling around us for days and days. Hardly gardening weather.
But the wind has me thinking about wind breaks and how I can grow something amazing to protect the garden from the worst of the elements. A crack appeared in the lockdown funk… researching all things windbreak lead to a distracted shift in thinking and a whole lot of “I wonder if I could….” And even a google search on ‘inflatable beach toys’ (that word beach is very important). Just as well I can’t go out and just buy loads of things because projects I rush into tend to be a bit of a disaster, and those I take the time to mull over surprise me with how well they come together.
So, the garden mojo is back…. But it won’t always be in the veggie patch I have got 10 acres of crazy coastal land to whip into shape and the inkling of plans are forming in my head. But for today I’m going to clear out those old summer beds so I can end this lockdown with a clean slate and a fresh approach.
Come again soon – things will start to look a little different around here. It won’t happen overnight, but it will happen.
Sarah the Gardener : o)