A Few Words before Bed

Maggie, who lives in Ontario, has never seen a caragana! Or maybe she’ll realize she has, once she sees these photos.

I planted a perennial bed right in front of this row of caraganas because 1) it’s what I see when doing dishes and looking out the window, and 2) while caraganas are invasive and tough to keep out of gardens and flowerbeds, this hedge is the only “hedge” the flowerbed has against the north wind. These were pruned drastically a couple years ago or they’d be considerably taller:

caragana full hedge

Right now the caraganas are blooming so they’re full of bees. The tiny yellow flowers can be squeezed between the thumb and forefinger to extract a little drop of nectar.


I hope these photos satisfy your curiosity, Maggie!

It’s been a super-hot day here. Even the wind hits you with a blast of heat and you can’t stay in the sun for long. I’ve been in and out all day, moving the hose around on the lawn to deep-water it, spraying tent caterpillars on the oak trees and the house and the driveway with a mixture of Dawn liquid dishsoap and water (it works; they’re dead in a couple minutes), doing laundry, cleaning the kitchen, sweeping all the floors, so on, so forth.

After a few minutes outside, I come indoors to cool off. After a while in the house, I go outside to warm up. Maybe this is the reason I’ve been ready for bed since eight o’clock this evening.

Emil called me, as he does every Thursday night.

“I won’t always be able to phone you. You’re going to die sometime.”

“That’s true. I won’t always be around, so it’s wise to talk to me while you can. And I like that you phone every week. It gives me something to look forward to. All mothers like it when their sons and daughters phone home often.”

“Maybe you’ll get sick and die. Maybe from cancer.”

“Or maybe I’ll fall asleep and not wake up. That’s how everyone wishes to die. Then it will be a surprise. But I’m going to die someday, for sure. I can’t live forever.”

We have some blunt talks. I hope, by engaging in these conversations in a matter-of-fact way, that when the day comes, Emil will be able to accept it as the natural order of things.

He is turning 29 this month; the same age I was when he was born. It’s lucky he survived. He weighed three pounds four-and-a-half ounces, was 10 weeks premature, and was grey and lifeless when they pulled him from my belly during an emergency C-section. They gave him a shot of something to get him going. He wasn’t diagnosed with cerebral palsy till he was 18 months old.

He’s staying at his place this weekend, and looking forward to it because one of his housemates and the house supervisor are going to make doughnuts.

There’s some talk of a thunderstorm and a cooler day tomorrow. I’ve been thinking of making doughnuts, myself.



4 thoughts on “A Few Words before Bed

  1. Kate, I think I have seen those plants, but have not taken note of them, as they have never been in my gardens. We had very invasive trees, honey locusts, that looked something like that at the country house, but they had long sharp thorns. We were constantly chopping them down and digging out the stumps. Your garden looks so inviting, cup-of-tea, lets-chat inviting!


Your thoughts matter! I love hearing from you.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.