A gasp of wonder accompanies the unearthing of my first radish crop. Composted soil cakes my fingers and filters between my toes as I double dig my veggie garden until the sweat flows freely. Swiss chard, sweetcorn, peas, carrots, potatoes in piles of tyres, tomatoes, squash and the sweetest, fattest strawberries under the baking African sun. All of these and more contribute to feeding our largely self-sufficient community.
This memory murmurs from a distant two years spent as an uchi-dechi (full-time trainee karate instructor) on a Stilbaai farm. It enriches the playing fields of my mind, while fulfilling a lifetime’s gardening duty. I’m also left with an understanding of my mother’s (and her father’s) passion for the pastime. After all, there’s something kind of cosmic about getting down and dirty – as any kid, or enduro rider, can tell you 😀
So I gladly obliged when my Mom asked me recently to photograph her Spring garden:
Yogi Raman, the fabled sage featured in Robin S. Sharma’s “The Monk who sold his Ferrari”, draws an analogy between the mind and a garden. He explains our natural tendency to think negatively, while emphasising the importance of plucking out all negative thoughts before they have a chance to take root. Just as one would lovingly tend a garden, starting with awareness of the weeds. One of his suggestions is “Opposition Thinking”, which entails immediately replacing an undesirable thought with an uplifting one.
Great advice, with a view to nurturing a mind full of beautiful metaphorical flowers 🙂
In summary, Robin Sharma states that “The quality of your life is determined by the quality of your thoughts”. Something worth thinking about . . .
Oh, and a post about my Mom’s garden couldn’t be complete without mentioning Gypsy and Fudge, who live in one of the corners. They’re her guinea pigs – and grandchildrens’ delight! This is Gypsy tucking in, but thankfully not into the flower beds:
- The fun of teaching your children some home-grown fruit and veg truths (telegraph.co.uk)
- Bain: Harvest musings from a lousy gardener (thestar.com)
- September A New Garden Cycle Begins (glenns-garden.com)
- How’s your garden doing this year? (seattlepi.com)