When the going gets tough, the tough….well, procrastinates.
I really try hard not to procrastinate – but when work becomes unreasonable with you, it only seems fair that you become unreasonable to work. The number of yellow stickies are growing by the minute on my mac and soon, it will leave the desktop to crawl onto the dining table. Eventually it’ll crawl up the stairs and then swamp me over when I’m in bed. It would be an embarrassing way to end your life – Death by Sticky Notes.
Of course, the most practical thing to do when swamped with work would be to – well, work of course.
But this is Adlina, we’re talking about. I laugh in the face of practicality and efficiency. I’m not German! I’m Malaysian!
Therefore, whatever free time I have, I dedicate to gardening instead.
I’ve been thinking about gardening for a long while. I love to cook and buying Western herbs in Malaysia becomes very expensive after a while. Also, I have a fridge that has a habit of freezing everything that goes in there, even though, as far as I know, I did not actually buy a freezer and so a lot of vegetables in there go to waste.
As always, all my obsessions stem from something. When the meat curing obsession started (stopped for now because I could not find sodium nitrates, and there’s only so much salted beef I can take without my blood pressure reaching to the roof) – I started it because of the bresaola I had at Vicenzo IT. I made cheese because the yoghurt had begun to curdle and I did not want to waste it.
With gardening, I’ve always wanted to grow my own basil I’ve had daydreams where I’d have bushels of basil that I can, of course pulverize – and then make basil pesto. Gardening for the sake of gardening? Pshaw! I don’t do that. I do things if there’s benefit to me. Like cats keep out the pests (but they seem to be a bit useless these days, eating more and lazing about more) and plants are meant for eating.
I dragged the husband a week back to Ace Hardware to get all the stuff I needed to plant. I did my research (ish) and was ready. Eizwan was stunned through out the entire escapade – he already had to risk botulism with my cured meats, and now he has to support the wife through another one of her silly adventures. He stayed mostly gobsmacked through out the entire time at Ace Hardware and only occasionally said things like ‘Uh, are you sure about this? You’re not going to be wasting money are you?’
To be fair to Eizwan, I’ve not had a very good track record when it comes to plants. I bought a ton when my friend D came over to visit, because I bragged to him about having a garden over email. It all died before he came. And then I bought a basil plant which also struggled. I tried to nurse a basil plant by talking to it, having conversations and still it died. I was quite sad.
We spent our Saturday putting our little garden together. I bought all the herbs from Cold Storage – I’m just one herb away from completing Simon and Garfunkel’s Scarborough Fair (Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme, for the uninitiated – missing parsley) and we re-potted them.
Sage that is growing really, really well. The thyme, well it was rescued from oblivion although I think it’s a 50-50 survival rate
Well, actually, Eizwan started to repot them and I bossed him around until he said ‘Hey! This is supposed to be your project! Don’t just stand there! Get your hands dirty too!’ But I think he really got into it, to the point that he woke me up in the middle of the night a few days ago, in the midst of a terrible thunderstorm to ask, ‘Do you think the plants will be okay?’
We repotted them in compost with a bit of organic fertilizer in there to help them grow.
And then I brought out my seed packets and said ‘Okay, let’s plant these!’
In true Adlina and Eizwan fashion, we did not really know what to do nor were we patient enough to go back to our PCs and do a bit of reading. I remember vaguely from Geography and Kemahiran Hidup (Life Skills classes) on what to do. I know it’s something to do with putting the seeds in a separate pot and letting them grow and then transplanting them.
I’m not going to go into detail what we did next but let’s just say that we got it all wrong. I’m not going into detail with what we did (err…take entire seed packet, pour them all in?) what I did but let’s just say when you garden, don’t do stupid like how I did.
I mean now we have to think about transplanting lots and lots and lots of seedlings from one tiny pot without affecting their roots. Oh, the joy.
Been one week and so far so good! Perhaps the curse have been lifted. They’re still alive. I’ve used some of the herbs in my cooking already, sage, thyme and oregano for a herb roasted chicken – although I admit, I’m a bit stingy. I like herb plant bountiful as opposed to naked.
My mum is warning me not to get too attached to my plants – they can still die but really, in my mind, I’m already daydreaming about the wonderful things I can cook with the produce from my concrete garden. Hmmm……