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G is for Garlic

Thursday, August 13, 2010


My husband Jim, who is a teacher by profession, is a farmer in  his heart. He spends hours and hours working in his garden tending his garlic and other vegetables.  He grows over 1000 bulbs of garlic a year.  He braids the bulbs and gives them to friends,  and supplies our family with all the garlic that we need for a year.  I admire his dedication.   He prepares the soil and plants the bulbs in the fall,   cover's them with mulch and then eagerly awaits for the plants to come up  in the spring.  We follow their progress daily.  When the scapes are ready  we take many  pictures and admire how beautiful they are, we make scape pesto and then wait for the time to pull the garlic.  Every year I wait for the report on the status of the garlic. Are the bulbs big and beautiful and healthy looking?  Some years they are and some years they aren't.  My husband is always a little sad when the crop doesn't meet his expectations.   And every year I say things like "it's not the product, it's the process", or "be grateful for what you do get - look for  the good", or "this too shall pass, next years will be bigger I'm sure."   It's easy for me to say these things but I'm not the one who has spent hundreds of hours in the garden working.  At the same time,   one thing that I have learned in yoga, and in being in business is to not be attached to the outcome of what I am doing.  I do my best and then I have to let it go and it will be what it will be.   If I just used my yoga practice to fix my tight hips, or heal my weak lower back I would have given up long ago.  I use the practice to stay present with my body and be with whatever is going on in that day.   I focus on what is happening in the moment, as opposed to what will happen in the future.  It is so easy for me to be focused on the end product (like wanting dinner eaten and dishes done, instead of enjoying the process of cooking it, or wanting my hips fixed instead of staying present with my body and focusing on what I can do).  So, my husband's garlic crop may not be the biggest this year - but who knows, maybe the smaller bulbs will have a stronger flavor!  I do know that he enjoys every moment in his garden and that doesn't change no matter how big the bulbs are.

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