Friday, July 28, 2006

A Country Garden

Ah, the simple life.

Seven years ago, my friend, Haze, relocated to a town of 72 people, on the South Dakota prairie. I was quite certain she’d lost her marbles. Now I look at her with envy, while silently tallying up all the things I have that she doesn’t. Like an enormous mortgage, car payments, credit card debt and all that accompanies a run of the mill, middle class lifestyle.

Her belief in the simple life is embodied in the landscape that surrounds her home. Casper, the cat, lords over her petunias. Pretty little zinnias speckle her secret garden. Sturdy honeysuckles, laden with yellow berries, create the perfect nesting spot for native birds.

Hazel’s is a quiet, peaceful place, filled with all the things you’d expect in a country garden.

There’s the lilacs, older than we are. Luscious tomatoes, quietly ripening on the vines. Sunflowers standing tall. And, my old-time favorites, hollyhocks and tiger lilies.

As evening falls, we enjoy a cool breeze in her shade garden. Hazel knows every person in her little town. It’s a place where the neighbors call hello as they stroll by and the kids come over to pet your cat.

When we were in college, Hazel used to say, "I'm going home where the buffalo roam and that ain't no exaggeration."

And, she did. While the rest of us keep searching, she's found her place in this tiny, little town - living a simple, quiet, life - in touch with the Earth and all the good things it has to offer.

*Start your own country garden with the hard-to-find species, and organic seeds, available from Seeds of Change.

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