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Over the Garden Fence: Coronavirus can't cancel spring

Telegraph-Forum (Bucyrus) logo Telegraph-Forum (Bucyrus) 3/21/2020 Mary Lee Minor, Over the Garden Fence
a stack of flyers on a table: Using collected items from around home, Earth, Wind and Flowers Garden Club member Janet Nance shows that the hope of gardening has not been canceled. Spring has not been canceled. © Submitted Using collected items from around home, Earth, Wind and Flowers Garden Club member Janet Nance shows that the hope of gardening has not been canceled. Spring has not been canceled.

In this time of caution, as events get canceled and social distancing is in vogue, I am grateful that there are still items in local stores to help soothe our souls.

I stayed out of the melee over toilet tissue last week and opted for some Easter candy. Retreat mode is still in place.

Curiosity got the best of me. The television broadcasts and Facebook postings were offering sharp contrasts in their views. "We're in deep trouble" versus "listening to music hasn't been canceled."

After three days, the birds had been fed, the workbench in the garage had been cleared with all nails and screws sorted. Food supplies were still in good shape with perch, venison, corn and berries in the freezer. As I think "peanut butter tastes good right from the jar," those at The Edible Landscapes let me know there was spinach and spring greens ready. Oh happy day.

Then temptation to visit a local grocery store grabbed me. Sure enough, those pictures on television of completely empty shelving, where tissue and paper towels once reigned, were the truth. All the potatoes were gone. That's alright because I found protein sources, almond and rice milk, and a few other things not needed, just desired. Happily, I made note of the fact that there was plenty of ice cream still in the freezers.

Back home, tasks on the nagging wishlist delivered me to a pleasant basement space full of stuff from some earlier days. Currently, heaps of photographs and cards are in 20 piles from the years of teaching at Wynford. Anne's Christmas gift, a Jackson Browne CD, is blasting at me. As the music soothes my soul, I know that "I am in my own little world, they know me here." Smiling faces in photographs of the child students who are now the world's adults remind me of how much fun was created in the Royal Woods, at Mohican Outdoor School and in art classes where we costumed up for portraits as if we lived in Picasso's Blue Period.

Cards with simple and sweet sentiments now remind me of vibrancy. Call me the champion of stockpiling the past. There's wealth in this storehouse of savings. There are some who say that this is living in the past and that I should get real. Defensively, I say, my being able to view memories of past events is like being hugged again and again.

And then lyrics from Browne bring tears; he is singing "Stay."

Something that has not been canceled is gardening. Tomorrow, the eastern bluebird nest boxes will go up. They know nothing of this coronavirus. Last season tree swallows used the single box so two boxes will go up this season. Walks around the yard and flower beds foretell spring's promises to arrive with news of flowering daffodils and tulips right along with ripening leaf buds on magnolia and forsythia shrubs.

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There is the thought that whatever we are giving up, our ability to stay quiet and out of the main arena of this pestilence is a blessing. Let the hospitals and clinics serve those who are threatened.

Keep embracing each activity which has not been canceled. Read a book. Bake a treat you have been meaning to try. Sing. Dance "The Twist." Write another thank you note. Take a walk.

That reminds me. Our visit to Heartland cannot happen Saturday, so I will send cards and photos from the last visit as cheer. Life is good and we are still in it.

Mary Lee Minor is a member of the Earth, Wind and Flowers Garden Club, is an accredited flower show judge for the Ohio Association of Garden Clubs and a former sixth-grade teacher.

This article originally appeared on Bucyrus Telegraph-Forum: Over the Garden Fence: Coronavirus can't cancel spring

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