My personal motto is that homes should be lived in and gardens shared. Visitors are a welcome treat. We’re all social creatures, heart and soul, no matter where you land in the social equation. Extroverts like to live large, while introverts find solace in the quiet in between. I’m a little of both.
My friend Jazzy has a day care next door. In the late afternoon her young charges visit my garden and deck, running up and down the ramp, checking out the fairy garden and swinging from the Magnolia tree. Yesterday they were playing hide and seek. It makes my heart sing when I hear their squeals and the sound of running feet. Sometimes they’ll peer in the kitchen window to say hello. I love the open inquisitiveness of the under-five set.
Our neighbor’s cat likes to call our place home. He doesn’t get the attention he craves at his real address a few houses over, so he travels to find it. He sleeps in the garden, plays with one of my cats, and has mastered his way in and out of the yard through a hole I need to fix in the cat fencing. We love him like our own and would be heartbroken if they moved.
Squirrels, possums, raccoons, hummingbirds, snails and a myriad of other four to six-legged creatures also stop by. Though destructive at times, I’m still honored by the visit. It tells me they’ve found a bit of nature in my backyard, a place to have a drink from the fountain or to eat a grub under the lawn. I don’t garden for a living; I’m not selling crops. So I work through my disappointment when one of them snaps a sunflower or digs up my (sniffle, sniffle) newly planted Snowdrop bulbs. They’re busy living life to the fullest on a much-encroached planet.
The welcome mat is forever unfurled. Won’t you please come in?