Just Watering the Plants

watering plants
This morning I was driving to pick up ice for the coolers.  It’s Sunday, the tea making day for the picnic with our friends at the Park.  As I was leaving the neighborhood, I saw someone parked at the entrance.  A man was working on something with the plants there, and a young girl stood beside him, ready to help.  Ah…..a Daddy and his daughter.
As I drove on the quiet road away from their concentrated efforts, I was on memory lane again.  Daddy worked until his retirement for the USDA.  Back in the 1970’s I guess they didn’t have the programmable watering systems that they do now.  It was before Daddy’s special gifts with computers was discovered, so he did all kinds of jobs out there.  One of the jobs was coming in on Sunday mornings and watering the plants in the greenhouses.  It was a great joy for me to go with him.  All was quiet there, as no one else was around.  I suppose it might have been a little “spooky” at times, especially if Daddy wandered off to take care of something else, but mostly I remember the sheer happiness of being there.
We watered with hoses.  Between the plants were the cream and brown pebbles to help with erosion I suppose.  Little tiny frogs hopped about when you least expected it.  No matter how early it was, it always seemed tropical inside the greenhouses.  I still recall the smell of the water hitting those warm rocks.  I remember the dark caverns between the greenhouses.  The grate of the metal doors.  Waiting on Daddy to unlock them so we could get started.  We watered and watered and watered.  It was a tropical paradise.  I don’t remember if we talked much, but I loved being there, around all those wonderful plants and being a part of their growing…..and yes, I loved being there with Daddy.
There’s a song recorded by country artist Trace Adkins, written by Casey Beathard, Monty Criswell, and Ed Hill:
And all this laughin’, cryin, smilin’ dyin’ here inside’s What I call, livin’
And she thinks we’re just fishin’
On the riverside Throwin’ back what we could fry Drownin’ worms and killin’ time Nothin’ too ambitious She ain’t even thinkin’ ‘bout What’s really goin’ on right now But I guarantee this memory’s a big’in
And she thinks we’re just fishin’

When I was headed back home, coolers full of ice, I saw Dad and daughter had moved on to another project on the other side of the road.  I smiled and remembered how great it felt to be Daddy’s helper, to be learning from him how to do it right (though probably not getting it every time), and what a treasure it is to have these precious memories right now.  As I came back from memory lane, I whispered a little thanks to them for the trip they inspired.
I wonder if Daddy thought we were just watering the plants…..

daddy girl

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