As my bones creak and muscles ache I can only imagine this is how Sisyphus would have felt on his quest to push a boulder up a hill. Whilst much of the rest of New Zealand heads to the beach, the lakes or the mountains we stay at home and make our annual effort to tame the garden. Each year we make a little more progress but as nature is apt to do the moment you feel you’ve cracked one project another pops up requiring attention.
Over the last four years we have done battle with gorse harvests, thistles and hay length grass. You know you still have a long grass problem when the wind blows a seed storm and you think it’s dust. After days of hard graft with the mower and strimmer/weed wacker the place looks much tidier and dare I say mostly looks like a garden rather than a hay field. The Kitchen Garden is an oasis of calm fully stocked with goodies and only the final painting to be complete on the arbour making our shady retreat complete.
One of the biggest luxuries of life these days is long summer breaks off work – partly vacation and partly enforced unemployment as the rest of New Zealand kicks back and has no requirement for consultants to whip them into shape. Even after his Lordship returns to work I have a long list of projects to plod on with.
I wonder whether Sisyphus had quite as many late starts to his pushing day. As many stops for morning coffee, lunch and afternoon tea. Or time out to read his Christmas books and contemplate the good life. I suspect not.