Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Callouses and broken finger nails

It has been hot again today.  This gets rather monotonous to report on daily,  but it does have a great effect on the garden.  The routine on these days is to water the plants early,  pick anything that is worth the trouble, pull all of the curtains,  close windows and stay indoors, quiet,  until late in the day when the sun goes down and it is pleasant outside.... then is the time to open the doors and windows, eat well,  and sleep by the open window until the morning.  By late evening,  if you're lucky,  a cool breeze blows through the open window and across the bed.  The sound, apart from the leaves rustling in the trees is the neighbours' air-conditioners.

It is that time during the day,  when it is necessary to be quiet and calm in this weather that there is time to think.  Once the household tasks for the day are done,  and any business attended to,  I have time to read.
I have six children (now grown) but, when they were small  our family moved countries every two to five years, in search of work.  Not only did I have a hectic household,  but moving regularly added greatly to my duties and responsibilities....  packing,  unpacking,  getting children settled in school,  husband settled in work and keeping up with the day to day stuff all of the time.  Reading was such a luxury that I still have a kind of guilty pleasure in taking time for such indulgence.  This weather is such a bonus...  reading time!

Today I received three books from Amazon.   We don't have any bookshop in Kapunda,  and so I've learned to shop online.
I am reading a book entitled "Ruminations from the Garden"  by Don Henry Ford Jr.  
Product Details
This is a non-fiction book about raising a garden in Texas,  where the climate is similar to this one in the summer and the descriptions of pitiful, dying plants ring so true.  But today,  the description of calloused hands that saved a wealthy man from kidnap made me think of my own unmanicured and untidy hands.  Gardening doesn't help callouses or broken fingernails, and attending a formal business meeting at a council or board meeting with dirty finger nails,  straight from the garden, is not the way to impress one's fellow councillors or board members.  
However,  in the words of Don Henry Ford Jr.,   "there is no way to earn callouses (or dirty broken finger nails) like these, short of hard work."
I do feel better about my lack of a manicure after today's reading... and I'm only up to page 23!