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In the movies, they call it foreshadowing… a visual warning of a future event. In this photo, it’s the bike, resting innocently against a post at middle left. Feeling motivated by the recent removal of a massive, poorly placed sycamore, Kim was cleaning up the backyard in preparation for our landscape remodel.

Our goal was to have the new landscape installed… sans plants, of course, because that’s my job… before the Fall/Winter rains kick in. Fate laughed at that lofty goal, because on August 7, Kim was hit by an at-fault Escalade driver while we rode our bikes home from work. He was lucky to escape the accident with his life, his brain (Go, Bell helmets!) and a broken leg.

Shoveling up old bark on August 3rd

Since his accident, we’ve had to abandon our plans to have a huge Summer yard sale. The garage will have to remain packed to the gills with the contents of Kim’s old house until next Spring or Summer, most likely. Too bad, because it makes a nice covered outdoor ping pong area, and provides nice overflow area for gatherings. It used to be where my son had band practice. I’m sure my grumpy next door neighbor misses the drums and electric guitars with their amplifiers turned up to 11.

Another priority for us is to find a landscape contractor. We are also about to undertake a kitchen remodel and will be addressing our house’s storage needs. The accident made us take a step back to look at things, and to reexamine what’s most important to us.

So today, instead of frantically dashing past the flowerbeds on my way to work, I… gardened. I got down on my hands and knees, pulled weeds, planted almost all of the plants that had been languishing in nursery cans, deadheaded Heucheras, fed my tired-looking plants some Happy Frog All-Purpose fertilizer and watered it all in with a hose. I also picked some ripe peppers and Armenian cucumbers, chipped the heck out of my nail polish, and got covered in dirt. A good day.

BEFORE

AFTER

AFTER

Still on my to-do list for this bed: a ceramic hose bowl and one of those cheesy fake rock covers for concealing the irrigation valves. I also need some sort of vine support (chicken wire? hardware cloth?) for the porch post. As for the SMUD meter on the far left, I just planted a ‘Black Adder’ Phormium and a petite ‘Purple Diamond’ Loropetalum that should conceal the meter quite nicely.

There’s still lot to do out front, but it felt great to finally catch up a little. While listening to Pandora. Somebody pinch me.

As for Kim and his bike, he’s healing and the bike will be replaced. I think we’ll both stick to indoor cycling for awhile. No Escalades in the home office/gym.

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