I finally got the holes dug for the main tree house tower. Something that would ordinarily have taken me about half a day took 2.5 days, I’m sad to say.
I got up early to beat the heat but ended up thwarted by rocky, very hard ground that had to be soaked and then roughed up with a persuader in order to then use a post hole digger. Tree roots won out in two of the holes and I had to stop digging them any deeper than 18 inches.
Middle age has certainly made me think of all the other projects that are long completed but probably would not have been even attempted today. Not only can I not work as long as I did when younger, I actually have to assess new ways of achieving my goals because I just cannot use physical strength to bull my way through any longer.
I find it sad learning these lessons and am glad I was able to accomplish all I have, but I do worry now about just how many Aleve it will take to get me through the day, in say, 20 years.
I have been thinking of how my neighbors are doing as we all get older. I walked by a neighbor’s home the other day and was really shocked at the decline in the maintenance. The place is large, the house is large, and RK and Twila are both close to 90 years old. I spoke with the home owners association president, a very kind man, and wondered aloud how things would end.
As we all age together it behooves us to come to terms with limitations and to understand that age and life means change and that change is not necessarily a bad thing. Another neighbor has taken a cottage at assisted living and is doing well. I walked down to his home that he still owns and checked out the red maple tree that I watched him plant a dozen years before. Here is a guy who is taking life as it goes and is still living it his own way. He lost his wife of 60-plus years last year, but he is still gardening and doing what he can. I had thought he had moved and was living with his daughter, but he showed up in my driveway and I was glad to give him the hug that I had thought of when I heard the news of his wife’s death.
I have plans for two towers on the tree house and a lower level that will be partially enclosed to allow the kids their fort they have been wanting. The time is right.
Now I just have to convince granddaughter Stella that crystal high heels are not the right footwear for climbing ladders and grandson Wilson that Grandma Susan still has it when it counts.
Susan Woody has been a home and garden writer for more than 20 years and is a master gardener.