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Jobs half done

May 26, 2018

When I was younger (so much younger than today) I used to have easy and regular access to drugs. This is neither a confession nor a boast – simply a statement of fact. Quite often (very often) in my early twenties the first thing I did when I got up Saturday morning was speed. Then I would tackle the household chores. I was a lean, mean, cleaning machine. The problem was, I was also easily distracted. Halfway through one job, I would suddenly realise the screen of the telly needed to be washed now. So I’d do that and move onto another job, the first one half-finished and forgotten.

I thought of this the other morning, not because I was on speed (although I wouldn’t say no – it’s been a long time), but because I couldn’t help noticing all the half done outdoor jobs.

For example, on Thursday I decided it was time to weed what I laughingly refer to as the back forty.

05-26 back 40

I got the cushions out and put them on the bench (which made Stella very happy), then I grabbed a couple of buckets and started grabbing weeds. This area was never meant to be manicured, but I do consider it important that I can actually see the California lilacs, the lavender and the two paths to the bench, all of which were barely visible. I don’t have a before picture, but this is where I got to in five hours on Thursday. It looks a lot better, but there’s as much weeding to do again as I did then. Will I ever get back to it? Interesting question.

05-26 lavender

It has reached the point where I can no longer pretend that the lavender in the planter on the left is still alive. It’s not. In the spirit of waste not, want not, I decided after I admitted this that I should collect all the dry, dead leaves with a view to making some lavender sachets. My grandmother used to make these and I loved them. I mean who doesn’t love knickers that smell like lavender? I sat on the deck Tuesday afternoon and started collecting leaves in a bowl. As you can see, still a lot to go. Wonder when that will be? Wonder when I’ll get around to making those sachets?

Speaking of lavender, remember my idea to put a proper bed at the front of the house? Well, that hasn’t gone far.

05-26 front bed

I did move two pots of lavender into place, intending to plant them, But that’s it.

Mind you, I’m not beating myself up completely about this. A brainwave earlier in the week put the whole project on hold.

What, you ask, was the nature of this brainwave? Well, for some reason, a pile of bricks came with the house. They served no useful purpose. Not, that is, until the autumn of 2011, when the roof of the woodshed sprang a leak. Obviously this was something that could and should have been fixed with tar, but it was November, there had been rain for a month and the rain was likely to continue for another three months. So, with the help of my visiting friend Darryl, I threw a tarp over the woodshed and weighed it down with said bricks. The plan was to repair the roof properly the following summer.

05-26 woodshed

Six and a half years later, the tarp is still there, covered with so many pine needles you can barely see the bricks. (Talk about a job half done.) So, anyway, my brainwave was to use said bricks to delineate the bed I was going to put in the front of the house. Finally, a good use for them. Unfortunately, this means getting the ladder out, climbing on to the roof of the shed, trying not to fall off while I slip around on the pine needles, and dropping all the bricks on the ground where they will be in the way until I sort out the bed. Oh, and finally repairing the roof. Assuming, of course, it doesn’t turn out that it’s beyond repair and needs to be completely replaced. All of which is a bit overwhelming. However, as God is my witness, tomorrow is another day.

These jobs will get finished. And I know speed wouldn’t help, so it’s just as well I don’t have any.

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