Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Swords into Ploughshares

Clearly when God inspired Isaiah to write the fourth verse of his second chapter (in whatever way He did it), the image was meant to be one of reconciliation and peace. Leave it to me to turn gardening into a contact sport.

So we've had a lot of rain lately, but also a lot of sun, and last week it even got kind of warm for a while, so I've been trying my hand at the gardening thing. On Wednesday I decided to go into the bracken at the side of the house and see if I could dig up some ancient compost from when my parents used to live here and tried composting, before the composter self-destructed.

What I should have done:

Gone into the garage, retrieved some shears, hacked myself a path. But no. That would have been both too easy and too much work. Instead, even though I was wearing shorts (on account of not being able to find the jeans I dedicated to gardening last year) and even though most of the previously-mentioned bracken is actually brambles, I decided to forge ahead, pathless.

Keep in mind that not only was the brambly bracken pretty dense, but also, my destination was on a slope, and I had, somehow, to wrest the remainder of composter off the remainder of compost. This was a little tricky, but I managed, and then I came up with the bright idea that the composter lid could be placed on top of the bracken so as to protect my exposed legs and make walking easier.

This might have been a good idea in theory. It was a terrible one in practice. The lid was smooth and therefore slippery, and my sneakers are about six years old and have been walked in pretty consistently, therefore lacking anything resembling traction. I stepped on this lid, set to the compost with my shovel, and suddenly went flying. If I remember correctly, both feet shot into the air (though that might be a later addition in my head). In any case, a nice long blackberry shoot slashed the back of my leg, and the ribs on my right side smashed, as I pitched down the slope, into the side of a tree at the bottom of it.

I didn't bother to get them checked out. They don't do anything for ribs anyway. I did disinfect the scratch. A few days later I was at Camp Selah helping with a clean-up day. Raking is tough on bruised ribs. But at least I managed to stay upright on all those pine needles.

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