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2019-05-30 - 9:56 a.m.

springtime, briefly

for my father-in-law's 70th birthday, he wanted a family cruise vacation to cuba. it was uncomfortable in a highly specific way, like a very soft prison. i've been assured by people who claim to know these things that increased tourism won't spoil the character of old havana, but just one ship vomiting out its tourists left the streets so physically crowded that it is hard to imagine six times that number. my son called our interior cabin a "cave" and awakened from every nap with his hair in soft little sweat curls.

* * *

we pulled into my brother's driveway late at night, and the wind in the pines still felt like home to me. i took my son to look for rain lilies and baby salamanders at the foot of the bluffs, and when he napped, i went out for a run on the greenway trails.

* * *

then we were home, and it was raining, and new green leaves were bursting from every stem and shoot. we brought our son to the cherry blossom festival, and to visit the leopard cubs at the local zoo, and to see the sharks at the aquarium, and we read him all his favorite books and put him to bed as the birds sang their evening chorus in the trees outside.

my son catches a stomach bug at story hour, and i fall behind on the laundry. all i want to do is work in the garden, where each project's "after" becomes the next project's "before," ever onward and upward.

* * *

reading: a guide to iceland's wildflowers.
listening to: the birds in the backyard.
working on: a drainage project. all up the block, neighbors cleared and graded their yards, which funneled spring melt runoff into the middle of our yard and turning it into a swamp. the bedrock here is very close to the surface, and the thin soil cannot handle so much water. if my diversion trench, berm, and swale work as hoped next spring, i'll close it into a french drain.
in the garden: after three years of work, all of the english ivy is gone from the side yard. the ivy in the far backyard will have to wait. meanwhile, some of the mysterious irises are blooming in the nascent backyard perennial border, and i'm having fun keying them out.

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