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A Drop of Sunshine

Where I live (New England), so far it has not been a fabulous summer weather-wise. It seems we get one or two nice, warm, clear days, then—boom!—a long stretch of cool and rainy weather. Last week was dismal not only in terms of weather, but for me personally as a few household mishaps occurred.


First off, our washing machine started to give up on life. It did some slow, halfhearted spinning that left everything still sopping wet. I really could have used one of those old-fashioned wringers! The repairman was called, but he couldn't come for another 4 or 5 days. That's fine—I'd just go to the laundromat for a few essential loads. That turned into a mishap of its own when, as I struggled across the parking lot with my giant hamper, somehow the detergent bottle opened up and dumped its gooey contents all over me. I mean all over me. All I could do was head back home to rinse off and change (well, I suppose I could have climbed into an industrial-size washer), a process which also left the car extremely goopy.

Another problem last week—one evening around 11:15 I was lying in bed, listening to a downpour and thinking how happy my newest plants and shrubs must be feeling. I then started thinking about how I was not happy with how I'd placed a new daylily next to my 'Green Velvet' boxwoods, and that I might like to replace it with the Shasta daisy called 'Becky' . . . but where would I move the daylily to . . . I was just about asleep by this point, when I heard my husband (a night owl—thankfully, in this case) coming upstairs: "Meg...MEG—the ceiling is leaking all over the couch!"

So without getting into more gory details, last week was not winning any votes for home ownership! Even I felt a little nostalgic for apartment living. (For John, that's more of a permanent state. His go-to response, even to something like stubbing his toe, is "This wouldn't have happened in the apartment." I have to give him credit, though—he did not press the issue last week.)

Then, on Sunday, the sun finally came out. I went out to the garden and saw that my prickly pear cactus had begun to bloom! It's cliche, but just in that moment I honestly felt like a weight lifted off my shoulders. As our daughter is getting older now, I've started trying to teach her to take a nice deep breath when she's getting upset or frustrated. This past week reminded me that my garden is my "deep breath."

In case you wondered . . . we're getting a new washer because it will only be a little bit more money than repairing the old one, and our ceiling leak remains something of a mystery, probably related to either our upstairs dormer or the siding, but it's in the process of being solved. In the meantime, the forecast looks sunny.

Oh—and the prickly pear is still blooming its heart out, though to my disappointment neither the washer repairman nor the contractors noticed it on their way in!