It is bliss to feel good again. I woke Monday morning and thought, “I’m back!!!” It is wonderful.
I can think clearly, the pain is gone, I’m no longer agitated, and I can’t begin to describe how lovely that is. My only remaining symptom is fatigue, but I think that’s just my body relaxing after fighting that dratted venom for so long. I get to rest now, and I sure have been, sleeping 11 hours a night with rests during the day. I don’t mind though. I’d rather be tired any day than the pain-riddled, agitated mess of a girl I’ve been for the last five weeks. Life is very, very good.
With my renewed energy I’ve been spending nearly every day outside, bundled up during the frosty mornings, basking in warmth during the sun-drenched afternoons. It’s been glorious.
I’ve dug holes and planted trees and bushes – lemons, quince, oranges, blueberries, goji berries, elderflower, lilly pillies, and roses. I’ve hauled goat manure up from the paddocks to spread over gardens and pots, planted silver beet, radicchio, beetroot, spinach, Brussels sprouts, red cabbage, morning glories, rhubarb, aloe vera, mint, and a pot of basil for my sunny kitchen window, then spread hay mulch over everything. I’ve got aching muscles, blisters, bruises, scrapes, and cuts, rosy cheeks from the sun, and I couldn’t be happier.
Thursday and Friday I emerged from my hermit gardener ways to spend time with lovely, lovely people. I can’t think of anything better than good visits with kindred spirits after a rough time.
I visited my new friend, Sally, a prodigiously talented potter, gardener, cook, painter, and free spirit who never fails to make me laugh hard and feel that life truly is a gift. I stopped in to chat with another new friend, Kathy, who invited me to join her fabulous gardening group and who never ceases to amaze me with the things she grows and makes. I love wandering through her gardens and greenhouses and learning all sorts of new things. She never lets me leave without a big hug and an armload of seedlings, cuttings, seeds, and all sorts of inspiration for home and garden.
Yesterday I got to spend the afternoon with my dear friend, Oma, who invited me over to pick bush lemons from the massive tree in her garden.
The weather was stunning, with cool breezes blowing while hot winter sun warmed our bones and bronzed our faces. We chatted away as we navigated thorny branches and plucked the fragrant, knobbly fruits.
Bear gave me an extendable branch trimmer to use, and it was brilliant for reaching the tip top branches that always seem to have the most fruit. It did double duty for us, bringing fruit within reach while allowing us to prune as we went. Most of the time the branches fell gently within reach, but we had to dive for cover a few times as the thorn-covered branches hurtled straight for us. We emerged laughing but unscathed.
The bush lemons are a bit smaller this year, but still juicy and with delicious zest that makes everything from shortbread to scones to lemon sima taste absolutely exquisite. One day this week I’ll set up on the veranda and zest, zest, zest, freezing my bounty for baking in the months ahead.
After the bush lemons were picked, Oma and I went for a walk around her property, checking on the olive and peach trees, sharing our dreams and goals for our gardens and produce. We had tea and ginger beer as we swapped tales from our week, then headed down to the cellar to taste Oma’s latest batch of plum wine. It’s hands down her best yet. We got it mixed and tasted some more until it was just right, then bottled it up to age a bit longer.
Then we watered the wormwood plant I brought her from my garden, and loaded up the horseradish and spider lily plants she gave me from hers. We made plans to butcher ducks and chooks together on Monday, hugged each other tight, and waved good-bye.
It was a lovely day.
Now it’s Saturday morning, quiet and sunny and peaceful, time to enjoy a leisurely breakfast with Bear before heading outside to plant my last two orange trees and start digging a plot for my raspberries. Oh yes, and laundry. Mustn’t forget the laundry.
What are you up to this weekend? xo