It was a warm sunny day and it was wonderful being able to spend the entire day in the garden, but as the day waned so did my body as I began to tire from the long day. It was about then I heard the chirping of the little ones. Oh, the birds had been there all day along with squirrels and even a few wild turkeys not to mention the lone deer in the distance. But, this chirping was from Fernando and Tanaya as they came to say “Hi Neighbor”. Now Tanaya is about seven and Fernando is about five.
Tanaya wanted to know my name again as she told me she keeps forgetting. She thought that she should give me a different name so she could remember it more easily. It was decided that she would call me “Gardening Man”. The questions came fast and furious. How do I know which ones are weeds? What’s that one called? It took at least 45 minutes to answer all their questions. Tanaya was careful not to step on any plants and informed her little brother to be careful where he was walking. Mom must have taught them well. Tanaya decided that her favorite was the one that was not a Rose but smelled good and was just as pretty. She pointed it out to me and I told her that it was a Peony. Now Fernando asked me the name of every plant and so I asked him if he could read. He informed me that he could and so I pointed out that each plant in my garden had a plant label with its name on it. He pointed at a plant and told me that it was his favorite. Well what is its name I asked, and he told me it said “Holy Moose Ears” -- He was close as it was a small Hosta called Holy Mouse Ears.
I was tired when they arrived but the joy in their little faces brought me back to life and the full day in the garden was a day to remember. Tanaya and Fernando have moved and I only see them when they come to visit now. But, the thrill of their return is amplified with shrill high volume “Hi Neighbor” as they carefully explore the garden after leaving their bikes in the middle of the street. Tanaya still likes the one that is not a Rose.