Re: [gardeners] Searching for spring....

George Shirley (
Tue, 08 May 2001 08:15:02 -0500

You certainly live an exciting and interesting life Penny. Have you ever thought
of writing a book? Could call it "Travels through Life with Jimmie." Or the
"Trials and Travails of Penny." I think it would be a best seller myself. I know
I always enjoy hearing about your home and your life.

George, still typing with two hands and one sore shoulder

penny x stamm wrote:
> George, I am delighted that you are using both hands so
> quickly!  Had me worried -- how could he be canning green
> beans or whatever, with only one hand...?
> iIt was 40 degrees last night. It is 40 degrees tonight as well.
> The only thing we are harvesting from the garden is all the
> winter-killed leaves and branches. So far we've had eight
> barrels full, plus 6 dead azaleas and 3 rhodies. I realize that
> I can no longer put off spraying the entire property in the fall
> with the protective coating ....
> There's always things to do.  The painters have been here and
> it has indeed been a circus. The boss took off on their first day
> for Romania and his parents' 50th anniversary, leaving a hispanic
> whom I know, named Jose, in charge. Of course, Jose is fine but
> definitely NOT a leader of men. Did I say men..? More like a strange
> movie: one Brazilian who speaks absolutely no Spanish or English;
> two Hungarians who speak no Spanish, French, English, German or
> anything else. Poor Jose who speaks Spanish and some English.
> And then there's Penny who can get along very well in Spanish, French,
> Chinese or English, mostly by using pantomime.  So I say to Jijio,
> the Brazilian, as I press my hands together, "I thought you were
> praying to God!" since he had been communing with person or
> persons unknown in the sky, for five minutes. And his reply...?
> "Yes, your husband use makina [machine] for garden?" And
> then again, I tell Shandor [Alexander] NOT to paint the garage
> door today because it will not dry in time. He answers, "Talk
> Pieter!" ....  I cannot find Pieter because he is painting the front
> door -- omygod -- and it will not dry in time. "I go now tell Yanish
> [John] not to paint garage door!" and I say, "Too late, Pieter,
> Jijio has already painted it!  I told Shandor, he said speak to
> Pieter, I walk upstairs, Jijio walk around back and paint the
> door!  Shandor no stop him -- no speak! "  Jose, meanwhile,
> is on another job trying to reach Pieter by cell phone, only
> the reception is terrible. I hear, "Hullo...? Hullo!!!!" Only a
> Romanian (that's Pieter) can say 'hullo' with deep, religious
> fervor .....  It gets you, right here.
> Disney is wasting the opportunity of a lifetime, not being here.
> I tell Jijio that the cellar door will never dry in time to lock up.
> He answers, "Maybe Jesus come back and fix door!"
> Of course, Pieter, Yanish and Shandor are avid Seventh Day
> Adventists, and their collective hairs stand up on end....
> They repaint all twelve front shutters box car red.  I have a
> heart attack. "Pieter, we call that color 'Box Car Red' -- you know,
> railroad box cars...???"  "You like?"  "NoooooOH, not for my front
> shutters! I want the same Chinese red I've had for 30 years! This
> looks like brown!" "No problem. I bring Chinese red to-maw-rhow."
> And so it happens that all the shutters get their 2nd coat in Chinese
> red on Friday. .. .. "Pieter," I say softly, "uhh - I think it's time for
> a
> change. I think I'd prefer light blue." "No problem. I bring color
> chart to-maw-rhow." And true to his promise, Pieter brings the
> color cards. "OK, Pieter," I say, "how about this lovely 'Sky Blue'?"
> "No problem. I bring paint to-maw-rhow." And Shandor paints all
> twelve shutters once again. Then Pieter finds me to say that he
> has hung one shutter up on the front of the house, and I must
> step out into the street to look at it. "Gosh, Pieter, such a
> magnificent blue, but it is too light, don't you think..?" "No problem.
> I get the color charts." And there we stand in the shade, trying to
> judge what a 2 inch square of blue will look like when applied to
> a shutter on a big, white house....   "Okay, Pieter, how about this
> one...?" "Ol' Blue Eyes" he reads with difficulty from the card.
> "Oh, wow, that's perfect!" I say, "Ol' Blue Eyes it is!  Pieter, do
> you know who Ol' Blue Eyes is - or was..?" "No-o--" "Old Frank
> Sinatra!" and Pieter looks quizzical.. "That's okay, Pieter, no
> problem."
> And now the shutters have been repainted Ol' Blue Eyes blue.
> Very beautiful, if shocking. Jimmie looks out the back window and
> says, "Well!  It looks like the millenium has arrived!" "You got it!"
> I answer. "I have turned over a new leaf. Gotta roll with the times."
> And I stare at the pyramid of drying shutters smack in the middle
> of the driveway...  Now I can't get the car out of the garage . . . .
> Penny, NY
> .
> .
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