Wednesday, October 13, 2010


After scraping paint off windows for 4 hours, sore calves and a blister on my palm rang the closing bell.  I went inside to check emails and found a small, insulated manilla envelope resting on my keys.  Someone has discovered that's the best way to remind me to do something.  Oh yeah, that someone is me.

The envelope contained instructions and a packet of seeds.  I read them, retrieved the phosphorescent green number one key that starts my whopper of a Dodge RAM, and aimed the pickup toward our field.  It was time to make a withdrawal from my bank of aged horse droppings, sawdust and wood chips.  The instructions prescribed 75% composted bark mulch and 25% horse manure.

Under a giant oak tree, near the woods' north edge, I piled the mixture in a rectangle formed by 4 locust logs, formerly fence posts, gifts from a friend.  As welcome rain fell, I carefully laid ginseng seeds 1/2 inch underground.  Now all I have to do is wait 7 or 8 years.

"Yoo-hoo."  I was afraid of that.  It's Virginia calling.  "Have you forgotten?"

No, I haven't.  Fortunately,  my readers either have or don't want to take me to task.  I looked for that darn stove the other day and couldn't find it because of all the foliage.

"May I have an extension?" I ask.

"Of course," says Virginia, "not that I have any choice."

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