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  • Elizabeth Barrett-Zahn

Another Sunday, By Any Name

Last Sunday of April and life is good. I must pause for a moment and say that life has been happy and productive for me for the last few months. I think it’s good to take stock from time to time with how you are feeling in your busy life. Take time to acknowledge and bank good times, happy times and productive times. What can be interesting is that even though I am claiming these last few months as very happy months in my life there have also been some disappointments, worries and hurts yet the core moments of life can build you up and prepare you for these hurdles. I suppose the correct word to describe this feeling would be contentment.

We are in the rainy season here at Sugarloaf Gardens and the rain wrecks havoc all along our paths and walkways. We need a good land and water engineer to help us deal with the mountain seep-water that fills the walkways with mini-streams and turns other areas into mud puddles. We have several ideas to deal with the water. Plan number one is to live with it as is, mowing where I can, staying away from flooded areas until they eventually dry. Plan number two is to dig, by hand, our own set of trenches and ditches to try to divert the water to places where it isn’t as problematic. Then build bridges to go over these newly formed streams around the yard. I think we would need possibly four bridges of varying lengths to do the job. Plan number three is to hire an engineer and have it done the right way. As long as the engineer is very confident and capable of understanding the subtleties of subterranean misdirections. For now, we wear our big rubber boots or old Merrills and slosh through the mud soaked grassy paths to get to the gardens or pond.

Yesterday was an unpredictable day, weather wise. We were going to go to Cooperstown to watch Kevin play baseball at DoubleDay field but that was rained out. Then the sun came out and was out for the majority of the day. But each time we were sure that we could begin and complete an outdoor project the clouds thickened and the drops of rain began to fall. I noticed that each and every time the rain would begin, no matter how spittingly intermittently, the frogs or toad would sing. Drop, drop of rain and immediately an amphibian refrain. I wondered why the song for sprinkles? Are they happy about the rain falling so that their range can be extended as they begin their search for mates? Are they trying to be the first to announce the favorable change in weather? And who out there is the announcer – toad or frog? I think next year we should audio-record the spring singing sessions because I am quite sure the tunes have already shifted to new species of amphibia. Spring time is such a busy time with sounds abounding along side the plants doing their amazing things of bursting back from the dead. The daffodils are up and even survived a few frigid nights. The lower bushes and fruit tree (not ours) have popped their flower blooms yet many other tree species are waiting for even more predictable weather before they take their place at the spring fiesta!

So life is good at Sugarloaf Gardens, the wines are fermenting, the gardens are being readied for the season, the yard is being cleared of waste and the grass is growing! John Deere will need to be back in action soon. All things in life should be weighed against the smell of the earth after a spring rain, the signs of plants forcing their way through rich yet muddy soil as they state their claim in the sun, the sounds of the birds on an early morning with the nip still in the air as the sun transforms the night’s dew into clouds before your tired eyes, and the thrills of frogs and toad in the evenings as they settle in for a long night at the pond party. Life is good when you take the time to respect the efforts of others! Life is good. To a good Sunday here on the Loaf!

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