July August 2007
TRUTH IS RELATIVE
(BUT NOT ONE OF MINE)
"Her name was Zoë," my mother said. "It rhymes with ‘Joey' and means ‘life'. So ironic for one who died so young."
I had just dug my favorite picture out of the pirate-chest trunk that harbored our oldest family photographs. It was a graceful scene of my great-grandmother's family in the garden of their home in Heppner, Oregon. All the women wore long gowns with long puffy sleeves made of summer-weight lawn. Their dark hair was piled high on their heads. Mother's grandmother, Nannie, was flanked by her daughters: soft, winsome Willetta and the handsome but stiff Mabel. Other relatives, male and female, looked pleasantly enough into the camera but one doe-eyed young beauty stood out.
SOUVENIRS, BLESS ‘EM!
This morning as I made coffee, a crack in the filter cone pinched my finger. I felt a stab of sadness more than pain. It would break soon and be replaced by a shiny new one with no attendant memories, no daily reminders of happy, long ago camping trips.
THE REALLY, TRULY COMMUNITY GARDEN
I never lifted a finger to help make our community garden happen but it happened anyway. After the weedy lot was dedicated – on Earth Day 2005 – individuals and businesses began donating money, topsoil, lumber, organic fertilizer, pipes, mulch, and tools. Not me, not a dime. By the time it opened for planting a year later, volunteers had donated thousand of hours of weeding, digging, moving dirt, building raised beds and fences, and laying pipe. Not me. Not a drop of sweat did I contribute. Still, because most of the people involved were fellow Master Gardeners, I took pride in the wonderland they had created.