New life and old

5 May

It’s been a poignant week. My family have been dealing with the loss of it’s matriarch, my granny, over the last couple of weeks. And this week it was her funeral. Every time it came up in conversation and people offered their condolences I felt somehow obliged to make them feel better by saying ‘Well she was 99 so she had a long and happy life,’ but saying that is almost to deny her importance in the family. So she was 99 and had the most peaceful of deaths but she still leaves a big gap in our family and will be very much missed.

After the funeral on Wednesday I felt restless – I simply had to get out of the house. When you lose someone if you are lucky you have some space to reflect and mourn but with a young family it doesn’t quite work like that. I heard the news and then went back to cooking the dinner because the kids needed feeding and life went on, as it does. School runs, doing the washing, going to work, play dates, life has just continued, of course, why wouldn’t it?

apple tree blossoming

Our apple tree is blossoming.

But running on auto pilot as we all often do is to suppress those moments of reflection coming to the fore. By Wednesday I’d had it with being on the treadmill of daily life, I needed to step outside and take a breath and just think about granny and the cycle of life. Where better to escape to than our plot?

I didn’t cry but I thought about her as I have for the last two weeks or more as I dug the earth. Her husband of more than fifty years was a keen gardener and I wish at the end I could have told granny about my humble attempts to showcase my gardening genes. My mum always says she didn’t get the gardening genes, but maybe she passed them on to me.

Today was a family get together whilst my aunt, over from America for the funeral, was still in the country.  On the way back home my uncle, who most definitely did get the gardening genes, showed us his vegetable garden and he gave me some healthy cuttings to plant in our land. His plot was an oasis of calm and reassuringly weed free, maybe one day ours will look something like that, I thought optimistically. With this in mind even though it had been a relaxing afternoon I felt compelled to go back to the plot, drop things off, water things, have a peek at what’s going on as it’s been two whole days!


Some proper seedlings – hopefully I won’t kill them this time!

arthur's plot

My uncle’s vegetable plot – wow, an ideal to work towards!

Life was in full swing at the plot. My purple sprouting broccoli is pushing itself up and out of raised bed number two. The potato plants are making their first appearance (unless that’s a weed I just don’t recognise!). Only two days ago there was no sign of them. My tomato seeds have started sprouting and the lettuce and Brussels Sprouts growing in my pound shop propagators are coming along nicely. And our apple tree is blossoming. Suddenly there is an abundance of life on our plot. Surrounded by new life, having a sly cup of flask-tea before returning to the daily grind, it felt like the best place in the world to remember my granny.

potatoes a go go

My potatoes are starting to grow!


One Response to “New life and old”

  1. Gill Ridgewell May 5, 2013 at 9:34 pm #

    Oh Becky what a lovely post. You can be sure Granny would have loved to hear all about your allotment. As I always say I didn’t get the gardening gene but I can fully appreciate a garden even though the only thing I want to do in mine is sit in a comfy chair and read! Xx

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