Wednesday, May 20, 2009

On weddings and weeding

My rings have temporarily been set aside. It was excruciating to take them off but necessary to keep working. During this season of gardening and weeding, a large blister formed just above the two bands on my right hand. I placed them in the jewelry box that my grandfather made and closed the small drawer with a bit of sadness in my heart. I enjoy wearing those rings. The first one is from 1940. It was my grandmother's wedding band.

I knew the age difference was significant between my grandparents but it wasn't until I was in my 20's that I heard the whole story. She eloped! He was the 40 year old neighbor and good friend to her father. She was the oldest girl of 6 children and only 19 when they fell in love. Her father was against them and after they married he didn't speak to her for 2 years. They wanted children of their own but couldn't conceive until 8 years later when they had my mother, an only child.

The second band was my mother's. She and my father met at a bar in upstate NY during her college years. He was home on leave from the military. My father asked her to dance 3 times before she agreed just to get him to go away. She forgot that she lied to him and it took my dad by surprise when he met her father for the first time. My dad thought he was meeting a man of the cloth. What he met was a cigarette smoking, tattooed, 4 lettered vocabulary man who wanted to know what the hell my dad was doing with his arm around my mother.

Those were the days!

My parents were married on a rainy day in August by a retired preacher who said, "awfully wedded life" instead of "lawfully wedded wife" and mispronounced my father's name. Somehow he turned Ronald into Roland.

No joke.

But enough about weddings .... this all started because I have an incessant need to weed.

Weeding is the perfect gardening activity for me. I put to use my problem solving skills! Assess the situation, create a plan of action, implement the tedious and detailed process, and the best part of all ... I see immediate results. It's fantastic!

Weeding allows me to be extremely critical and get to the heart of the problem without fluffy words or cautious tones. It's satisfying to be brutal once in a while! Even if it's just with the plants. Living in the south there aren't many opportunities to "tell it like it is" unless you include the phrase "bless her heart". Sometimes it's exhausting to be nice!

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