She was walking through the aisles of flowering perennials, lost in thoughts and dreams.
He, in the tool shop, was eyeing a dangerous-looking metal thing and wondering how it worked and what he could accomplish with it.
This was their Sunday ritual. Up and out early, grabbing coffee and pastries on the way to the adventure for that weekend. Today it was a plant nursery, of which they hoped would hold great opportunity. Long veterans of home-improvement shows and design magazines, they sought a closer encounter to the world of gardening they had mostly viewed from their living room.
Upon arrival, they stopped to look at brightly colored annuals strategically stationed at the entrance, then unconsciously went in separate directions seeking the personal discoveries that would satisfy their expectations of the day.
Though landing with enthusiasm and wish lists, they departed with nothing more than a bag of freshly made apple-cider doughnuts.
I was behind them on line, buying a few new plants for my gardens and doughnuts of my own. My observation from watching a few minutes of this young couple’s life was that their outing seemed somewhat bittersweet. The experience left me curious. On the way out they held hands, heads bent caringly toward the other’s. Cinnamon sugar dust marked their path.
As we reached our cars together I couldn’t help striking up a conversation. “Excuse me, do you mind if I ask you a question?”
Nudged out of their own world, she offered in a very welcoming tone. “Sure, how can we help you?”
“Well,” I began, “I couldn’t help watch you both move through the aisles choosing the most beautiful plants and perfect tools for yourselves, yet you left empty-handed.” They both laughed ironically, as if having been discovered in a place they didn’t belong: a situation they had obviously found themselves in before.
“You see,” she eagerly shared, “We live in a tiny apartment in Manhattan with barely room for growing windowsill herbs.”
He joined the conversation, “And we have dreams of buying a house in the country.”
In unison they blurted, “We can’t wait to have a lawn of our own.”
Jon Feldman is the owner of G. biloba Garden Environments. Reach him at 353-3448 or www.gbiloba.com