by Richard Kordesh
I concede that “Hard and Fast” might seem a weird use of the phrase, given that I’m referring to vegetables! But, this is the time in the summer when we can barely keep up with the harvest. The climate favors this window in time, so the gardeners must stand ready.
We added to the challenge of readiness this year by taking a trip to England and France during the final two weeks of July. That vacation coincided with the explosive arrival of our cucumbers, many of which we had wanted to pull while they were small enough for pickling. Fortunately, our now-adult daughter, Kathy, has grown up with our gardens, and stepped in to maintain a good harvesting pace while we were sailing in the English Channel. Bush beans appeared during the same time. And the first waves of red onions – we had planted them at two-week intervals – began demanding their liberation from the ground.
As for liberation, the excursion to Europe also included visits to such D-Day sites as Pointe du Hoc and Omaha Beach. The bluffs along the five beaches where courageous American, British, and Canadian soldiers landed are still marked by the remnants and scars of war. Bomb craters abound, but they now burst with meadow grasses and flowers.
The back-and-forth between the rhythms of the earth and the sometimes violent spasms in our lives yields many surprising outcomes. The gardens we tend as well as the fields that flourish without our guidance nourish and heal us, sometimes it seems against all odds
Guest blogger Richard S. Kordesh is the author of Restoring Power to Parents and Places and has worked professionally in the community development field for 35 years.
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