Little Plastic Greenhouse

Those cloud formations early this morning looked a little on the unsettling side, because every time I see a separating band which is followed by exceptionally dark clouds, I become nervous. Some years ago, a meteorologist mentioned that they can be the most dangerous at times, because if those opposing systems are right, they’ll turn from being horizontal to vertical, and oft times spin-off funnel clouds. Some years ago I took several pictures of one of those formations which I’ll post with one of my daily journal pages. I think when you see one of them, you’ll consider them a bit creepy as well.

Since it was Sunday morning, I went back to my quiet corner where I had my contemplative session of spiritual exercise and reflection. My thoughts were continually taken to those poor people around the world who’ve contracted the China-virus, and living in areas where their medical resources are few and far between. South America is really getting hit with it now, and unfortunately the biggest country being Brazil, didn’t heed the warnings early-on, so now they’ve been fighting raging battles on all fronts.

After finishing up my prayer time, I changed my clothes and headed out to work for about three hours on an inside project until I figured I’d had enough of a beating of such kind for a day, so I stopped, drove to a take-away and picked up something quick from their drive-thru and headed back to my office for a lunch break. After getting a little food in my stomach, I rested a bit, and then headed out to my little/big project which is coming all the closer to being fully completed.

Since I had a few things to do in the yard, I figured it best to get those done first. While working away, I just happened to see something red in the corner of my eye, and when I looked to see where that darting red was coming from, there on an evergreen tree branch sat a Scarlet Tanager! Oh if I only had my camera with me, because that near-florescent red male was quite the sight. It didn’t stick around long, but the few moments it was there, I fully absorbed its beauty. When I looked them up, it’s no surprise they’re not very often seen because they’re usually found in more wooded areas that are away from residential districts. I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised to see it because of all the more sightings of birds and animals they’re been since our pandemic shut-downs.

I visited with a neighbor who also saw that Scarlet Tanager earlier today, but for her and her husband, it was the very first time they’d seen one. While visiting with her, she said they’d been delayed from coming back from their winter digs down South because of the coronavirus. She did say they’d quarantined themselves for two weeks after their return, just to make sure they’d not un-knowingly carried it back with them. I thanked her for being conscientious, but also added how much I wished all the rest would do the same. We both agreed that the young are not taking this pandemic serious enough, and when the second wave does hit, that’s when we’ll really have to buckle down and follow strict protocols.

I worked for about three hours while there, and all the more thankful it’s all nicely coming together. Since it’s been a very long project, and being such for the most valid of reasons, I dare say there’s much truth to projects taking much longer when there happens to be side-tracking intervening circumstances which near-always diverts focus.

Before I headed home, I stopped at the groceteria and picked up a few things, and then headed over to my private garden to check on those San Marzano tomato seedlings. As of now, I have fourteen plants, and hopefully a few more will come up. What didn’t surprise me, was that package of seeds being over three years old, and still getting around 75% germination out of them. What the seed houses like to keep secret, is that most seeds are good far longer than a year or two, just so they’re kept dry and out of sunlight.

As those tomatoes were sprouting, I made sure to cut the bottoms out of some plastic quart juice bottles I’d saved, removed the lids, and then placed them over those seedlings. It’s amazing how quickly they grow when contained in their own little plastic greenhouses. Once they’re big enough, I’ll remove those covers, and then have to create some sort of fencing to keep the deer out, because there’s no area in our City that’s deer-free. Rabbits usually don’t bother tomatoes after they’ve grow tall enough, but those deer are the wicked ones to keep deterred the entire growing season of tomatoes.

The traffic was heavy again today, and when looking at license plates while driving, I noticed one vehicle with Black Hawk County plates on it, and another with Linn County. I sure hope those people realize they may be unknowingly spreading that virus in our northern counties.

I thought the following little writing I found in an exceptionally old book I’d just recently acquired, would help lift spirits, just as it did mine. I’m copying it as written:

FOR DEPRESSED SPIRITS.–Take an ounce of the good seeds of resolution, mixed well with the oil of good conscience; infuse into it a large spoonful of the salts of patience; distill, very carefully, a composing plant called “others’ woes,” which you will find in every part of the garden of life, growing under the broad leaves of disguise; add a small quantity, and it will greatly assist the salts of patience in their operation. Gather a handful of the blossoms of hope, then sweeten them properly with the balm of prudence; and, if you get any of the seeds of true friendship, you will then have the most valuable medicine that can be administered. But you must be careful to get some of the seeds of true friendship, as there is a seed very much like it called “self-interest,” which will spoil the whole composition. Make the ingredients into pills or powders, take one night and morning, and the cure will be affected.

Tonight’s one-liner is: Distrust those who love you extremely upon a very slight acquaintance and without any visible reason.

Joe Chodur

About the Author | Joe Chodur

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