14 August 2012


I always know when i type with forked pen because i go into all sorts of convincing detail and throw-away elaborationalia whereas when im truthin' i havent time for such irrelevances.

Loipon, can't remember why but i visited the greenhouse a few days ago. It always represented the pits of my garden slavery - bad enough to be toiling on the external treadmill let alone be despatched to the sauna annexe. I used to ignore my mother's instructions and if it came to a fight, I'd bellow some home-truths about it felt to have ones face rammed daily into another's hobby.

But i was there and as soon as i walked in a wonderful peace came over me.

greenhouse junkThis had always been impeccably tidy, pots by the size, tools hanging, packets of plants neatly filed in little drawers - it reminded me of my maternal grandpa's carpentry shed where he made everything including jigsaws. Every tool hanging neatly, nails and screws in drawers in the cabinets Dupen made, reference books and magazines filed - all that.

Without anyone having entered, there was a wonderful shabbiness and disarray and the cobwebs! Oh joy!

They were like the final finger to all the years of slaving and slogging to no purpose except humiliation and crushed self-respect.

As I gazed on them with adoring satisfaction I was reminded of my favourite image of my new-found release and final slamming of the door on the fingers of all the rubbish up with which I'd had to put:

The 'garden' had been like a Quasimodo bully-boy retainer, safe under the patronage of my mother to shove and order me around.

Then no more mum and I called the shots. Worm-turn pay back time, except it wasn't so much the worm turning as the whole existence of the 'garden' and everything it represented being erased in an instant from my life. Blessèd relief to wake each day with not a seed or stamen on the schedule.

Meanwhile, Bully Botano Boy suddenly deprived of all sustenance: no 'pay packet', no victuals no refreshment, no words of encouragement, no young master to kick around.

In the movie, it would be seen blundering listlessly around, waiting for a chance to tug at my hem, cast beseeching eyes, gesture to starving mouth, totter pathetically, its rags catching on the encroaching undergrowth.

But i never passed its way, the only sign of my existence the car put-putting down the drive en route out to seek a bit of over-due 'Life'.

The cobwebs seemed to represent that ghastly American concept, 'closure'.

My notebooks drying in the sun after yesterday's drenching.

The book in the foreground has only the first page written in: notes by my mother for gardening books suitable to recommend for Christmas. Always looking ahead. It's a notebook I bought for her as a little Xmas present because I saw that she was misplacing her regular lot or mixing her topics. The page is dated January 13 2011, the day before she died.

Hard core gardenry impossible to live with.

Blazing hot day sagging energy and eyeballs. Everywhere I thought would be closed is open and those i counted on being open, shut.

Zoomed up north with windows wide open to recapture some of the early days of interest and exploration.

I remembered a regular topic of dinner conversation that I started off answering simply and then got more elaborate and expansive.

My mother would suddenly remind me that, when she passed on, that would be it with her pension and the money would stop. At first, I didn't know how I was meant to answer so I'd make a face and nod and mutter something about being in touch with various pals in England for when I needed to make a quick transfer. Then I thought to end the repetition by assuring her that I was indeed aware of the sacrifice and risk I was taking. The next time, I agreed with her that it was indeed a foolhardy risk and a sacrifice of devotion that her friends also remarked on. The next time, I pretended that it was a topic often harped on by her friends who also pointed out that the theft of the girls' jewelry added a certain stress to what was obvious to all, a dead-end job. Literally.

Having brought the topic up, she seemed less than keen to follow it up and would grumble at my replies if not leave the table with a "Well if you don't like it, you can fuck off."

When friends asked me her reaction to my response to her dead-end pension goading, I'd repeat the 'fuck off' reply and flouncing off to her bedroom and explain it away as part dementia. But which half?

rained on deskRaining in my heart ~ Actually, sunning in my heart thanks to flash storm yesterday which sent rain bucketing down including thru my study window and onto all my electronica. I whipped everything into the dehumidifier room and they all seem to be working OK.

But narrow escape: had my mum been alive it would have been the full drone drivel:

  • wonderful rain, the flowers saved

  • repeat from 0800 - 1030hrs, drone blah fah blucking fah ...

  • go about my day until lunch when i would be informed that maman had a pile of weeding/shredding all down the drive

  • Fah blucking fah droning on about the ground being wet the weeds come right up.

  • at the news of umpteen weedings down the drive, i express admiration and urge to take care and not strain herself. i do not give any indication that i recognise this corny ploy to lug it all way.

    Wheelbarrow : favourite phrase ploy was 'next time you have your clippers/saw/rake/screwdriver/shredder on you, ... blah blah fah blucking fah ....

    Note, my wheelbarrow, for added personalisation. I would ignore it but the next time the subject came up i would be ready:

    "When am i likely to be brandishing a [NAME OF TOOL]? I do my best to avoid stepping into the garden anyway, let alone carrying a [Name of tool]." Ach, the arguments we had.

    DREAM ~ a harmless regular dream that I wake from and grab pen and paper to jot down the answer.

    My mother, Anna and I are in some dock or quiz.

    I'm being asked to name three examples of selfless concession or consideration that have lightened my slavery.

    I'm racking my brains but all i can come up with is run-of-the-mill behaviour that required no self-sacrifice - such as cooking and ... er ... cooking.

    Out of the corner of my eye I can see Anna getting nervous because she's next and her time with me embodies daily consideration and putting herself out and thinking ahead to how what we've planned can benefit or please me.

    She's trying to whisper me clues but they're last straw refuges such as gardening being good exercise or ... or ... cooking healthy food.

    For some reason, in the dream it seems important to come up with something and when I wake (just in time before the quiz-inquisitor moves on) I reach for the pad to jot down some examples so I'm primed for when the dream repeats itself. But nothing comes.

    ~ Dear Sam, checking I'm behind him. He sleeps in all his familiar hollows and when I step out on the patio he bounds up as he always did and we do a circuit of the lawn and he leaps and bounds and I kneel down to his height so he can terrify me by the closeness with which he bounds by.

    The gardening biddies ask with arch hopefulness if he pines and whines and scratches at the maternal door. I have some invention that I trot out.

    They ask how the garden grows and I recognise them as the same gardenry ghouls who allowed themselves to be waited on hand and foot and watch me lugging barrows hither and thither and cluck snide remarks about my obvious loathing.

    To their questions about how growetheth le jardin, i turn the tables and ask them to do a good imitation of my reaction:

  • they know my loam loathing
  • they know how many years i stood it
  • I ask them to imagine having been 5 years on the treadmill of a foreign hobby that they had come to dislike and vow revenge on ~ "So what would your answer be? Suppose you'd been forced to blog several hours a day, followed by meals devoted solely to blah blah fah blucking fah ramblings on HTML and URLs and choice and placement of wing-dings and illustrations ... quel relief to be able to cast the keyboard aside, eh? Hurl the mouse into the deepest trash can - nay! Place it under the wheels of the car and drive back and forth over, cackling manically with a hoorah! at each crunch and splinter of plastic.

    I tell them they needn't actually eff 'n' blind aloud like squaddie navvies, just make those ludicrous 'quote' gestures so beloved by Americans.

    I even do this down the phone, in pleasant even tones to mask the menace.

    Whose turn in the barrel? - I put the soothing sight of cobwebs to fitting use. Instead ripping pages out of gardenry tomes and simply dropping them in the bin, I drop them into the webby barrels; likewise the boujouterie that I'd bash on the kitchen table (under the ghostly maternal nose, imagining her still rabbiting on even as some sentimental piece of chinoiserie joined my girls' bling in the frolicky filching ground.

    The web is like cotton wool for the more extreme reactions or more choleric phrasing.

    The filch that goes on filching ~ See? This is what annoys me so much about the inside theft of my personalest possessions. I would wait til we were seated and then ram the news home so that the disgrace would sink in ... the stench that goes on stenching.

    Here's a post on FaceBook for today, 16 August 2012, but it's as fresh and relevant as it was when the girls' stuff was handed over to Villa Thefty.

    "My house was burgled in the middle of the night last night, in pirgi, ipsos.

    please everyone lock up on a night all windows and doors as i have lost alot of money and all my jewelry due to my own stupidity.

    There is a reward for the return of the jewelry esp my late mothers rings if they happen to be found somewhere, no questions asked.

    The cash value for the rings is not much as they were old but they mean the world to me and my father."

    I've left it untidied because the gaucheries add poignancy.

    The quotes I'd show my mother were equally unsophisticated and I'd point out the pain -

    "See what pain that break-in caused? They had to wait 'til Mr Burglar called. The girls and I had room service, we were able to keep (and lose) it in the family?

    Perhaps you think that it hurts less when it happens to someone who can't spell and write?"

    God it made me sick to have these daily reminders of my loss.

    No effect, of course - chuck whatever was at hand and run from the room screeching "All right! I'm just a stupid old woman!" Bit of a non-sequitur but I put it down to the dementia half of the noggin.

    Someone asked me the other day why I keep the vileness alive. I put the same test to them as I did each time to my mother:

  • Remember how many people were stolen from in this double theft Piece of Work:
  • Six - me, Stephanie, the two girls and ... the 2 most important people in my whole Will heirloom scenario ...
  • My as yet unmet sons-in-law. All this has been going on - excrement flying since April 2007 - and the key players don't even know we exist.
  • When we meet up, they need to be able to read the facts from every angle and I need to be keeping the memory in good repair.

    One of the dismissive excuses used to slither out of blame is that my cuffs and pins and blingetterie was mere cheap tat.

    OK - so now read this humble burglaree from Pyrgi, Ipsos ... no mention of monetary value there:

    "The cash value for the rings is not much as they were old but they mean the world to me."

    to be continued. leave this visible in draft form to egg me on


    No time now, got to hammer the words out.

    cobweb greenhouse

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