Monday, November 10, 2014

Visiting neighbours

Emptying toilets on a windless and quiet day. Spreading the contents into a shallow grave in a far off corner of the garden. Last year's remnants all but disappeared except for a few scrunched up bits of paper not quite eroded away but will be soon. Compost is a crucial ingredient to how we take care of our place here. 
The only stink or odour is from myself as I plod through another vegetable plot armed only with a garden fork. 
As each season passes our plots keep evolving with new content added, whether from mushed up leaf mulch or broken down veg and anything matter. The bonus this year is a pile of weeds, covered over and hidden from when we first dug out the garden two years ago, now reduced to a pile of top soil. Sieved meticulously in the hope nothing too weedy is left, and spread where needed across a dozen or so plots of 20m2. But it is an endless battle with what we want and don't want to grow here. Our neighbours scoff and prefer the less laborious and time-consuming method of ploughing every year. Maybe to give more time to make nice cakes. 
A recent visit to a neighbour and the standatory plate of homemade and freshly made squares of chocolate and quark slices are brought through from a bedroom left without heat next door to the kitchen to where we are sitting. We hadn't arranged to see our neighbours but had just turned up. A plate of cakes is always on standby for any passing guests, a very normal procedure when visiting people in this country. But it is in-polite to take a piece of cake from the beginning. This proves more and more difficult as I try to listen but without understanding enough to our 'grandma neighbour' gossiping to Jana. And after poured a glass of stiff homemade plum brandy the temptation is too much to wait any longer. The result is a delicious flavour to the palette. Worth waiting for, a bit like compost.

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