Saturday, October 2, 2010

There's Always Next Year - Being 60 (week 22 - by Margaret Ullrich)

Calendars don't mean much to me any more.

A week ago, on September 23, it was the first day of Fall.  We even had a full Harvest moon shining that night.  

How much more official could it get?

But it just didn't feel like Fall.  When we walked through the neighborhood many of the trees had branches full of green leaves.

Seeing is believing.  

It was still summer, okay a wet summer, but summer, no matter what the calendar said.

We'd had a cold night on September 18/19 - turned out to be the coldest time in the month - But, we just threw a couple of blankets over our tomato plants and didn't think much of it.  At most we wore sweaters and enjoyed the sun whenever it appeared.

But yesterday it was official.  The geese were flying south like they'd all just cashed in their airmiles.  We were facing a hard frost night.

Blankets on our plants wouldn't cut it.

Time to harvest and take a tally of the crop.

Gardening in Manitoba isn't for sissies.  We get it all.  Droughts, flooding, whatever surprises Mother Nature has up her sleeve.  
We just plant in the Spring, hope for the best and expect the worse.

Sometimes the crop is a doozy.  
Sometimes it's not. 

I have to admit I've picked more tomatoes than this at the end of the summer.  And in better condition.  The extra rain didn't do much for my tomatoes' quality.

Oh, well.  Could've been worse.

Many are green and will ripen in the basement.  Some have odd spots - probably got nipped the night of September 18 - that can be cut out.  They're not pretty, but still good for a sauce or a steaming bowl of soup.

Aren't we all?

We start out with hopes for the best.  We get through the rainy and dry times.  There's always a frost that leaves a mark.

But, the rest is good.  
Good enough for bowls of soup.

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