I looked up, surprised to see daylight fading. I had been taking advantage of the unexpected warmth to work on my favorite kind of puzzle — fitting rocks into a path near the front door.
“Well, since your wife always seems to do things B, D, C, A, I’m just now making some progress.”
My enthusiasm sometimes leads me to not just jump in with both feet, but to skip around and hit the highlights before going back to connect the dots. I’m not one to plod through a task, methodically moving letter by letter from A to Z.
Instead, I work best if I’m free to caper about and minimize the monotony of “monkey work.”
It usually makes short work of drudgery, but sometimes I get in my own way. The result? Long work and no headway.
In this case, I was so eager several years ago to build this path, that I removed the soil from most of the area. But the weather changed and pressing matters called. The project stalled.
Next, there was a sale on bogless cranberries that I envisioned draping over the stone border to the path, so I purchased five of them and plotted where they’d go. But the weather changed and pressing matters called. The project stalled.
(Afraid of losing the potted berries, I planted them anyway and have since lost two to thirst, neglect and erosion.)
Along the way, we had access to some gravel, and my brother delivered a load of foundation stones, but pressing matters called so we dumped the gravel onto a tarp and piled the stones along the driveway. The project stalled.
A year or so ago, I had some free time, so I donned my gloves and got down to work. I cleared the gravel and stones from the head of the path and pieced together the start of a border.
After a morning’s effort, Kevin and I assessed what I’d built.
“It’s too wide, isn’t it?” I observed.
“Yeah,” he responded. “Can you fix it?”
But, the weather changed and pressing matters called. The project stalled.
A few weeks ago, I pulled weeds from among the piled stones and around the forlorn cranberries. I noticed that some of the gravel had shifted off the tarp, so I grabbed a bucket and began tossing the runaways in.
Before I realized it, I’d grabbed a shovel and begun re-edging the path’s course from its foot. Soon, most of the escapee gravel had been recovered and I’d begun fitting my brother’s foundation stones into a border.
I was finally making progress.
But dinner calls. Here’s hoping the project doesn’t stall.