Monday, June 13, 2016

Rainy Monday

Monday morning and another thunderstorm rattled me right out of bed at 7AM.  Checking the camera on my phone, I see Mom is still asleep, so I have some time to write.  

Carl and I had another sweat fest this weekend, especially on Saturday when the temperature soared into the 90's with high humidity. 
I've been a bit short-tempered lately which is, sadly, nothing new for me.  I try to curb my tendency to be a twat, but there are times when my impatience comes out in spades.  I truly completely appreciate Carl's help in the garden, indeed, this crazy jungle of ours would completely cripple only one gardener (in truth, we could use clones of both of us) but there are times when the two of us have 'words'.  

Saturday, being the hot, sticky mess it was, found Carl hauling pine needles from the Back Eight and me weeding in the adjoining hosta bed.  (Yeah, I know, why do we have so many hosta beds?  Why is that blasted garden so big?  Are we nuts?  Ok, we all know the answer to that question.)

Though Carl and I were only about fifty feet apart, conversation was proving to be difficult due to the proximity of the plants and rocks and trees.  And probably, though neither of us wants to admit our failings; maybe, just maybe we don't hear as well as we used to.  Carl grew up in a blacksmith shop and has worked in metal fabrication for 39 years and even though he wears earplugs religiously, I can tell you the shop he works in is a cacophony of alarming banging and grinding bedlam eight long hours a day.

I grew up on the farm and never heard of an earplug until I met Carl.  Though farming wasn't as deafeningly loud as Carl's work, I was exposed to a lot of loud noises too, especially with the tractors and field work.  Carl insisted I start wearing ear plugs after we married and I reluctantly agreed.  (Ok, he was right, everyone should wear hearing protection.)  

Be that as it may, I really don't think either one of us hears as well as we think we do.  

Carl would say something and I'd ask, "What was that?"  

He'd repeat what he said and I'd catch half of it.  

"What did you say?" I barked.

"Well, there's no need for you to be grumpy," Carl answered.

"I'm not grumpy, I couldn't hear what you said," I grumpily answered.

"Yes, you are crabby, what's wrong?" 

"Nothing's wrong, we just have too much to do and not enough time to do it," I muttered.  Grumpily.

"What did you say?  I didn't catch that," Carl said.

"I said, "We have too much to do before Wednesday."

"We have to go where Wednesday?"

"Oh, never mind!" 

"I couldn't hear what you said, what did you say?  Why are you so grumpy?"

Fun in the garden abounds here. 

Anyway, after apologizing for being grumpy, we went back to work, doggedly in pursuit of the gardener's dream, a weedless spectacle of horticultural perfection.  Ha ha.

We took a break for lunch at around 1PM and were enjoying a rousing adventure with Hoss and Little Joe running around on the Ponderosa on the retro channel when the phone rang.  A friend of ours from Neenah wanted to bring some visitors to meet us and tour the garden.  The visitors were some long lost cousins of mine whom I'd never met before.  

Oh, boy.  I wanted to meet my relatives, but the house, oh the house.  I admit I'm not the best housekeeper in the winter, but when summer rolls around, well the house is really on it's own.  The house is not pulling it's fair share at all, by the way.  It could try a little harder to remain tidy.

So, our next step was what Carl deemed a 'Scream Clean'.  My sons remember the term well.  I'm sure it is one of their most cherished childhood memories.  If I'm grumpy when it's hot and I'm gardening, you don't wanna see me when I have to clean the house in under an hour.

We pulled out all the stops and managed to sort of, kind of throw this place together.  I was doing dishes, Carl was picking up his tools and putting them away (What's that?  You don't have a carburetor on your dining room table?  I do.)  I moved on to vacuuming and mopping the floors, and ta da (after tossing a lot of stuff down the clothes chute) the house was presentable (I didn't dust) for company (if they don't look too closely.)

My cousins live in Florida, Ohio and curiously, Appleton, but the way we met was through a garden walk a year ago.  I was giving a group a tour through the garden and someone asked me my maiden name.  When I said what it was, one gentleman  in the group named Robert perked up, "That was my mother's maiden name."

Robert could pronounce Van Wyk perfectly.  (Most people cannot,  it's Wyk with a long Y, not Wick.  Just in case you cared.)  We started talking and came to find out we are second cousins.  We have to get together with the family tree soon, they have all the family records. 

We had a very enjoyable afternoon visiting.  The weather was too hot to work and just right for taking a nice break.

 I'm on the left, I'm also the youngest, but I look the oldest.

 First impressions mean a great deal.   (I left my knee pads, hat and most especially, the strap-on milk stool in the barn.  We don't need the relatives knowing how insane I truly am.)



FlowerLady Lorraine said...

What a hoot!

Once again another post that has me smiling with your great sense of humor.

I love you both and wish your summer garden tours to be a great success.


Anonymous said...

I agree with Lorraine. You do have such a great sense of humor. It is funny, but on my post I left a comment about you being lucky to have family help and while you do, it was humorous to have the post talking about your garden banter and perceived grumpiness. I would be too being impatient and not always hearing my husband. I think he talks really quietly on purpose to rile me. I read the post Weed On too. There are no weeds in your garden EVER. I never have seen a photo of your garden looking less than perfect. I bet your house is too.

Missy, John & Ros said...

I love your sense of humour too. John and I have the same conversations - what? speak up? pardon? Of course he's deaf and he mumbles. It's not me.... and if visitors come to see you not the house they shouldn't notice the dust. I bet they loved your garden tough. It's looking wonderful.

Carol said...

I think we must have been twins at some point in time. We sound so much a like in many ways. I was born with out the house cleaning gene and have lived through many "cleaning screams" too. My mother-in-law was the original Mrs. Clean and Captain of the Cleaning Police. She was always complaining about how much I neglected my house to keep my gardens like a park.
SO now I'm off to find a strap on milking stool :) a garden tool I'm in desperate need of. I'm also envious of your rain ... I thought we were going to get some yesterday but it split and went around us again :(

Karen said...

Rainey, thank you, my dear friend. :-)

Donna, thank you, and I'm glad I'm not alone with not hearing things, ha. Ah, but there are WEEDS in this garden, I'm battling an infestation of quack grass today (if it doesn't rain first which I hope it does because I don't want to do it.) And my house is never clean, we're both far too OCD, always another project lying around waiting for completion.

Ros, I'm really happy to learn other people have the same issues, now I know we're in good company!

Carol, we must be related! 'Captain of the Cleaning Police', that made me laugh out loud! Weeds never grow back as fast as dust settles in the house, and carburetors seem to spring up overnight on my dining room table. I can never figure these things out.