Obviously, there was some work that needed to be done outside. I knew a thing or two about gardening. My mother was had won several awards for her garnering. some of the best days were working outside on the yard and planting flowers, bushes and clearing out the beds that were all around . It was a job, but I enjoyed getting out in the sun and feeling the wind. Far better than ironing, washing or cleaning invisible dust inside,I jumped at doing any yard maintenance I could. I looked up at the sky, not much Sun, It was a much different climate than the tropical sun , I was used to being in. The bed I had been working in had flowers that looked like little suns themselves.
“The ground was dry, too dry.” I commented to myself. I sat back and pondered, looking around for a sprinkler head or some sort of watering systems. “These flowers were going to need lots of water ,especially when the sun started blazing.” I murmured to the flowers, pinching out a dead bloom. I yanked at a creeping strawberry plant.” If I didn’t get it out when it was small, it was going to choke out the flowers and anything else it grew up against. ” I explained to the little gold flowers. ‘ A typical black widow plant.’ I thought. I jerked at the little vine that had snaked around the stem of one of the bigger flowers, it didn’t want to let the sunny flower go. I drew in a deep breath, such was the ways of yard maintenance, if you were going to put in structured, flower beds then you were going to have to keep it up and not let it go hay wire.
“Well, you are working hard. Those plants are stubborn.” The voice was coming from above me. I looked up and into those deep, ocean blue eyes . An outline of dark ,wavy hair was framed by the clouds above. He blocked out a good bit of my view of the manor wing. . His smile was expanding and I realized that I was staring with one plant dripping from my hand onto my knee. ” They’re so dense and thin. ” He squatted down beside me. He picked up some of the weeds and fingering it asked ” What is wrong with this plant that you pulled it out and yet piled it here?”
I added another spiny, prickly plant to the pile.” I’m not sure what it is. It’s growing too big and it will messed up the symmetry of the bed. When the sunny plants grow bigger, then they were going to need the area to fill out. I was giving them the room. ” I brushed off mud from my knee. “Beds need to be tended, at least beautiful, structured, plotted ones like these.”
“Are you saying that these beds are NOT being cared for ? At least, in YOUR opinion? ” He was going through the weeds that were choking out the smaller, more flowery plants . He frowned and leaned forward,knees resting on the brick border.
Raking the ground between the little plants and smoothing the ground out, I twisted around to work on the bed behind me., I knew that he was watching me, what didn’t he want? I wasn’t feeling very sociable and I could use a smile from someone today. I worked on the taller weeds that were coming out of the Iris ? Although, I had never seen an Iris with an orange center.
He was separating the larger flowering plants and probing the sides of the ground. Almost like he was checking for damage, he drew in a breath ” Marie DOES NOT LET ANYONE BOTHER HER PLANTS BACK HERE. These are her babies and her care! ”
The larger side bed had bigger bushes and more plants, ‘I wasn’t sure what were the preferred plants and what was the overgrowth?’ I puzzled. I separate some the limbs and looked at the trunks underneath. I rather liked the blended look of the orange and deep, provincial blue with the popping muted claret red of the tiny clusters of flowers. I tilted my head and looked down the center of the bed. There were several bushes but they had no undergrowth and they were all the same height, crowded and fighting for space and light. I frowned as I sat back. ” The plants are having to fight for light and water -” I scooted around.
” Well, you look like you were looking down the keyhole of a machine and didn’t like what was inside. Come on-what-?” He looked over his shoulder and rocked back, stood quickly. How did he moved so like that?, didn’t he ever lose his balance? I thought. ‘Why did he-?’ “They need to be thinned out-”
” Here let me help you, you can box me up later.” Marie came into view with a large box and lots of plants streaming over the edge. She had an ample, orange brimmed hat with colored flowers woven into the crown. Her face looked like the sky above only as an approaching thunderstorm, towering overhead, threatening to explode any second.
Looking down at the pile of weeds and quickly throwing them into the bed behind me, I gathered the sticks I had been using. Since I had no idea where the gardening stuff was kept, I stuffed them under the bush nearest me.
Marie stared at me, her face stern and her eyes brimming. I opened my mouth. ” let me help you with those, you just tell me where and I will- ” He interrupted ” Marie, we’ll just get out of your hair and leave you in peace.
“Beautiful day for some fresh air”. he caught my hand and leaving me no choice , he started a quick stride away from the buildings out into the grounds. ” He was looking around at anything, but me. I pulled out my hand and he smiled, a sort of crooked, tilted smile. ” I had been thinking of putting in a garden of your own, since you can’t seem to let plants just be. He was walking in a slow amble, deeply breathing in. ” The other day, when I was out here, I found a curious tree that reminded me of you. I think it would look great in the center of a round garden near the forest. ” I looked at the old growth forest ahead of us. It was a good distance from the manor house as I had begun referring the place.I glanced back at the house. I looked around and I didn’t see him( oh, what is his name? ) There was a wide arc of a horizon, I could see, only? ” What do you think about this for an expanse ? ” Looking down, there he was with a carved series of lines in the ground. I smiled , feeling like I was seeing a card from home. ” It’s an ankh! I love it.” He furrowed his forehead and smiling that crooked smile. He motioned as a spot next to him. ” What is an Ankh?”