Don’t ever tell him I said so, but I suspect Dave and I are a good team in the garden. I come up with all these cool ideas for projects, and Dave explains why they can’t be done. I’ll put my hands on my hips, gaze out into the middle distance and begin, “I was thinking…” and Dave instantly begins to groan. Thinking, we both realize, is not my strongest suit.

I have a spot in the garden that I would like to put a pebble mosaic in, all mortared up and everything, and Dave indicated he was willing to help me out with that. So one day I laboriously dug out all the weeds and leveled out the dirt and proclaimed it ready for the concrete base, and he came home and said it looked fine–just fine!–but I’d need to dig the whole thing down about another half foot for the gravel base. Let’s see: that’s a twelve-foot diameter circle, times pi, multiplied by six, carry the shovel…hummm. That’s one hell of a lot of digging. Thanks a lot, Reality-Boy.

At least he’s still on board. Usually the whole idea gets smacked down right off the bat. There’s the expense factor, the degree of difficulty, and always, always, those precious laws of physics. As if he never broke a law.

I still recall when a casual thought–that it would be really cool to be able to weed without bending over–led me to a glorious vision of a path dug down so deep into the garden that the ground level ended up being waist high. Can you see it? By the time the idea had grown in me for a day, I was already descending into my own personal Grand Canyon on mules of fancy. Excited, I sketched out the vision to Dave. I got The Look. It’s a rigid look with no humor in it, and by the time he begins to reply, he is already exhausted with the effort of keeping his eyes from rolling back into his head. Then he proceeds to load down my mules of fancy with packs o’ facts. No place for the water to go. Backhoes. Gravel. Ten feet deep. Drainage tiles. Blah, blah, blah.

By the time he wound down, my little Grand Canyon had eroded away, and also the Canals of Venice that had briefly replaced it.

But he did build us some creditable waist-high masonry vegetable beds, and they look to be here for the ages. One thing about this place: our walls do not tip over, our walkways do not crack and our patio does not buckle. I sometimes think Dave just likes to stomp all over my muse. But he just wants my muse to have a decent tool belt.