My Parents’ Garden
I started this tiny series with a generic beach setting to test the waters of my writing skills. Pun absolutely intended. Now I’m moving onto something a bit more specific; a place where I spent my whole childhood. Far from being a constant, my parent’s garden has changed more than me over the last few decades and it continues to evolve as plants outgrow their original patch of ground and have be moved as well as new ornaments and furniture being purchased. One thing that is constant is the rejuvenating properties my parents’ oasis always provides. I could happily sit out there for days and have done for over 20 springs, summers and early autumns.
A warm breeze ruffled the bamboo leaves behind me and pulled at the pages of my book, urging me to turn them faster. I shifted my position on the cushions, the rattan beneath creaked in protest and scared away a brown house sparrow that was perched on the bird bath. She had been considering taking a drink, but my sudden movement made the little bird’s mind up for her. Rolling my eyes at my lack of stealth, I positioned myself more comfortably with legs stretched out over a cushioned rattan stool that wobbled on the uneven flag stones.
My eyes returned to my book for a few seconds before a bumbling bee distracted them. Employing its wings at full capacity, the bee crossed from flower to flower, collecting nectar and pollen from the blossom of the young apple and cherry trees. Suddenly it crossed the short expanse of grass between the beds and the patio I sat on, arcing its flight path upwards and landing purposefully on the flowers poking through the leaves of the small palm tree in front of me.
Squinting up to where it had flown, my eyes focussed on the sky and the wisps of cloud being dragged across it by the wind. An aeroplane sailed through them, off to some distant land where the sun might shine hotter than it did in England.
I returned my gaze to the book in my lap, but before I could focus on any of the words and find my place, the neighbour’s cat sauntered deliberately towards me. He glanced at me with his wide white face that was capped with an orange smudge that ran down his neck and along his back. His eyes lingered on me while he carried on walking, only turning his head at the last second before squeezing his mass of fur through a gap in the hedge. White hairs tipped with amber caught on the thin branches as he slipped through and they waved in the breeze before breaking free. They twirled and jumped as they were gusted higher and higher, joining the aeroplane on a journey to who knows where.