I enjoy inspecting the front gardens I pass on my way to the shops – observing the seasonal changes and admiring (or not) what the owners do with their plots. This garden has been totally untended ever since I moved here and the unused conservatory falls deeper into disrepair each year (what a waste!), but what a joy it was to pass by the other day and see a little patch of buttercup meadow gleaming in the sunshine. A glimpse of my rural childhood landscape there in the dusty street.
On my way home I pondered the treats that nature provides for us when we leave things alone. I thought about the neglect and cultivation of gardens and whether there was a life lesson in there somewhere. Neglecting ourselves is clearly a bad thing to do, but in the same way that an over-cultivated garden looks sterile and dull, an over-managed life produces no unexpected beauties.
Which is a comfort if you don’t have time time, energy or resources to do everything you want to do in life. Left alone, some things will produce unexpected rewards, or, given time and inattention, your perspective will change and you will see beauty where you once saw mess or neglect. The weedy patches in my garden are no longer depressing reminders of my limitations, but potential buttercup meadows.