Who needs internet dating, all you really need is a giant garden bordered on one side by the road.
Boobs, sundress, tattoos… and they drop like flies neatly along my fence line.
I spent 10 hours in the garden yesterday, with the sunburn to show for it; and it was insanity. The women smile and wave, generally saying something nice about my garden or muttering about my mental stability under their breath.
The men stop.
The older retired set compliment me on being a good woman, and we chat for a while about how women don’t grow their own food anymore and how sad that is. He leaves with more compliments, referring to me as Sugar, Honey, or Sweetheart as he walks away. He always tells me he’ll be back when the tomatoes are ripe… and he always is. I have at least a dozen older neighbors that wave dollar bills over the fence every September.
The married men… and these are the worst. The big bad wolves of the neighborhood. I could tell you every single husband that cheats on his wife within a mile of my house. They leer at me. they make comments about my appearance. They start running daily during garden season. They come late afternoon to catch me rinsing off. I know these things because they tell me. Eww. There’s really nothing worse than being hit on by a guy, only to sit next to his wife at PTA meetings. Some men are just snakes…
The boyfriends… and these are the best. They talk about their girlfriend’s garden and ask me for garden advice or just tell me they think the garden is beautiful. They usually make the effort to stand my fence up a little straighter too. They’re the good guys, the helpers. Aw. There’s about one a week, so don’t get too excited.
The single men. The most challenging. Don’t get me wrong- I’ll be damn happy if my very own Prince Charming walks up to the fence to hand me a shiny 3 carat princess diamond. Yeah, sign me up- but it just isn’t that easy. These men range from absolutely repulsive to hot 23 year old half naked college student home for the summer. It’s either light hearted flirtation with a side of compliments- or outright whistling, followed by a request for my number.
With a nice exception yesterday.
I was roasting in the mid-morning sunshine. Spreading newspaper and straw mulch in between the rows to keep the weeds at bay. I’m determined to pull off this garden and work full time, and enjoy the summer with my daughter. I’m trying to cover as many bases as I can to make this as easy as possible. I heard someone at the fence and looked up.
I laugh at myself because it’s the first thing I notice and acknowledge it silently in my head. I start walking over, smiling and melting at the same time.
He’s cute, cute. I think I’ve seen him somewhere before. I’m not sure. Damn cute though- granted his shiny head is only helping him with me. What a weakness… good Lord.
C- Hey, this is quite a garden you have here. Is it a city project?
J- Nope, just mine.
C- Well it’s beautiful and I love the round paths, it’s very feminine.
J- I suppose that happens when there’s not a man demanding straight rows? I like it curvy.
C- It looks that way. Here’s my card, I just moved to town and I’d love to help sometime if you want. I’d like to know what makes an anti-farmer start farming.
J- An anti-farmer?
C- Clearly you’re a girlie girl, but with tattoos and 8 times an average vegetable garden?
J- Pretty much.
C- Call me if you want, I want to know more.
He smiled and jogged off and I laughed…
Perhaps I should make a poster and announce it to the masses. I’m not dating… which is precisely when they all come flying at you. I’m too happy not dating, though I’m definitely wound tightly. My life is a douche bag free zone. It’s complication free, stress free and happy. My biggest concern is a slug eating my cucumber plants. I have a new job I’m really excited about.
I have time with my daughter and my garden is going in quicker than ever before this year. I’m moving my own mountains, instead of wasting time getting my feelings hurt. I crave bad habits like everybody- but I’m finally at a point that the cost is too high for me to consider. I know that I can’t have what I really want in my life if I’m wasting time doing what I know doesn’t work.
Tempting… oh so tempting… but no.
I have tomatoes to plant. A fence to rebuild (ugh…) a yard sale to put together, a new job, etc… I don’t have time for a potential douche bag- so as sweet as they all are- and as easy as it is in the garden.
I’m throwing the number away. Sigh.
I know myself too well…. and he’s gonna look better and better while I’m doing that fence.