There have been plenty of moments throughout this experiment-I-call-gardening when I have thought the end was nigh. I was the one striding around in the back yard, wearing the sandwich board announcing the end of the world, assuming the worst, shaking my head at possibility.
I can’t grow stuff, I told myself. Steve and I aren’t going to be able to do this. We’re not going to produce viable vegetables and fruit off the vine. Or stalk. Or bush.
But last night, I went out in the back yard, and spent a few minutes gaping at the bounty. And I do mean gaping. Some might call me a mouth breather, but others might call me amazed.
I retreated to the kitchen for a colander, and returned to the garden for a picking session. I picked nothing but tomatoes for a long series of minutes, one hand clutching the colander while the other twisted and pulled one tomato at a time off the plants.
When I finished, I carried them up to the house, my mouth still hanging open. I grabbed the camera, knowing that I’d better get some evidence before I started turning these guys into dinner.
My upstairs neighbor, Tom, wandered by my back porch with his dog, Harry, while I was in the process of photographing the colander of tomatoes.
“Hi, Genie,” he said. Then he cocked his head just slightly. “Are you photographing food?”
“Oh, yes,” I said. “Absolutely.”
“Hmm,” he said. “Well, good night, Genie.” He wandered around the corner, still shaking his head ever so subtly.
I decided not to tell him that, these days, I photograph everything. First of all, I decided that, under the ripening circumstances, it was time to update the blog header again.
But even more importantly, if I don’t photograph rampantly, I might not remember this later, and I don’t ever want to forget this summer, these tomatoes, this shift in my relationship with the Earth.