If you ever want to unload some of your belongings, the nextdoor app is the way to go.
Yesterday I posted this:
I have a bunch of stuff I am gifting to the world.
Large overstuffed green velvet armchair: 38” wide, 36” deep, 32” high.
Four beautiful oak dining room chairs, two of them captain chairs with arms, with green leather padded seats
Two Ikea bookcases: one is 47” long, 8” wide, and 26” tall, the other is 74” tall, 15” deep and 14” wide.
Large white Crate and Barrel platter with leaves and grape clusters
Some terra cotta garden pots and ornament type stuff.
Outdoor bamboo blinds.
Vintage glass curtain rod.
Large Cyclone fan.
Metal garden table and green metal chair.
And a bag of misc.
Everything but the glass curtain rod, which I’ve decided to keep, was gone within hours. My downstairs neighbor Erik took the chair and various other people showed up and hoovered that stuff up in no time. I find people are very motivated in such situations. They pull up, wheel in, load, and careen off before you can change your mind.
Almost all of the aforementioned items I have had for at least 15 years and many for longer.
Strange to be leaving behind a garden that I cleared, planted, lovingly tended and that is now established. My way was to save the water from my shower every morning and laboriously haul it out in a pail–partly a gesture, obviously, but an important one, I felt, and for the rest to hand-water, sparingly, from a hose, making no noise and little waste. While I was gone for the month, someone installed two tall, plastic, unsightly overhead sprinkler heads that, to my mind anyway, will water unnecessarily: most California native plants, once established, need little water, and if they do need water, need it once a week or so, and deeply. This will rain water on everything, probably daily and shallowly, and definitely remotely.
I know, I know: not my garden–and never has been–not my business. So be it. Plus, I’m hardly a horticulturalist. Plus I’ve probably actually been doing a hundred things “wrong.”
But if I’ve learned anything, it’s that a garden is a labor of love. The more labor you put into it, the better it responds. The more labor, the more serendipitously charming it will look, the more intelligence it will radiate somehow. Mine was a garden with river rocks dug out from the ground by hand and thoughtfully placed, seeds sown with hope, plants pondered, prayed over and praised…I picked out every one of those plants, drove them home, knew their names…A relationship was formed.
How incredibly grateful I am that I was given the space and the opportunity.
And may the people who come over form their own relationship with the garden.
Last night I heard a prayer someone recommended for use with people who we feel have hurt or wounded us: I’m sorry, forgive me, thank you, I love you.
I’m sorry. Yes.
As I pack up more and more stuff, it’s also interesting to see what’s left; what’s essential as I more or less camp out for a few days. Six 12-ounce packages of Starbucks French roast (I buy them expired on ebay). A giant container of pure cane sugar. A glass of roses from the garden. My portable prayer box (breviary, Magnificat, candle, incense, matches). A small old wooden crucifix. Three rosaries.