“I believe that like Alice Through the Looking Glass, with the camera one comes so close to the real that one goes beyond it and into the reality of the dream.”
Minor White

Better Gardener, Better Friend

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The gardener is attentive – attentive to the plants, the soil and the weather. The gardener is flexible and opportunistic. The gardener leaves room in her life to take advantage of opportunities. Being a gardener is a different mode of existence. Becoming a gardener changes you fundementally.

Before you became a gardener,you might have filled your schedule. Most non-gardeners do. But anything unexpected then results in overload. And most of life is unexpected. So you were always overloaded. You never had time for anything spontaneous or unscheduled. (And when your friend or a family member need you most, it is likely to be spontaneous and unscheduled.) You also seemed to live from crisis to crisis. You might have even thought that your going from crisis to crisis “putting out fires everywhere” was because you were so important. In actuality, being always too busy for anything unscheduled or spontaneous – seemingly alwaysy to go from crisis to crisis – these are signs of a life not being lived aswell as it could be, a life full of missed opportunities, a life too full of busyness for most of what makes a life worth living.

Now, as a gardener, you leave time for the unexpected. You make flexibility in your life. You minimize scheduling. You take on only what is reasonable. You know the unexpected is always happening, so you don’t make plansfor every hour. You leave plenty of room in your plans, your schedule and your life. You do this because you need to be ready to drop everything and tend the garden when it needs it. But now you find that you also, magically seem to have more time for your child, or your elderly mother or your friend. And when your friend or someone in your family has a crisis, it is easy to be there when you are most needed. You are a better gardener, a better friend, a better parent and family member, and a calmer, happier person.

Carol Deppe – The Resilient Gardener: Food Production and Self-Reliance in Uncertain Times

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