I'm still in a gardening mode. My favorite things are the ones that kind of take care of themselves once they're planted, with an occasional division to multiply the wealth. The period of bloom is usually much shorter for perennials, but the show is so magnificent , and there's the promise that it will come again next year, so it's hard to grieve the loss when they die back.
I'll be keeping grandchildren for the next few days. I'll show them the nice fat toad that I uncovered in the lower bed and probably have to provide a cup for a caterpillar overnight. Perhaps the robin's nest outside my bedroom window will provide a surprise hatching while they're here. I'll let them have unlimited chocolate milk and make pancakes for breakfast. We'll read storybooks, some of their mothers' favorites mostly. But then they'll go home, and I'll sweep the floor and put the caterpillar back in the yard, probably to dine on the bedding plants I've labored over, and then it will be very quiet.
Sometimes I think Walker came into my life because God knew that I wouldn't want to be really, truly alone for any length of time. I never really batted an eye when the girls married, even though one moved very far away. Seeing them move on meant that I had done my job well. And I'll have to admit, I enjoy having the house quiet so I can read or write or just watch the politicos on TV.
Walker and his dad and I are three mostly grown-ups sharing space. We each have our routine things to do to keep our little nest in order, and of the three of us, Walker is the most reliable in this department.
Wednesday sundown never arrives without Walker making sure the trash is collected, separated, and taken to the street. The dishwasher barely stops before he unloads it. He is so accustomed to putting the groceries away that I sometimes have to ask him where things go. He does his laundry every Thursday night after work, moving anything I might have had in the washer to a small dishpan, meaning that I often have to re-wash them. (We need to work on that one.) He makes his bed as soon as he gets up, and always remembers to clear his dishes and put them in the dishwasher.
That last one is sometimes a source of conflict between big Walker and me. I accuse him of leaving things for the dish fairy, and sometimes get a bit testy...okay bitchy...about it. Walker III does not like these conflicts. A few days ago, he came and put his hand on my shoulder and told me not to worry about it, that he would take care of getting dad to shape up. After the next meal, I noticed that he sat back down, watching his dad. When I questioned him, he told me he was making sure that Dad didn't leave his dishes in the sink for me.
Seeing Walker go about his business is satisfying in the same way my perennial garden is. He is well situated, but requires minimal care. May we always be this happy.