Monday, 9 June 2008

Grit under my nails

She shocked me as she snuffled her iced coffee up the straw, rested her pristine manicured hand on my forearm and confided - "Well we do get bored of the sight of each other sometimes but basically, we just sit back and watch the roses grow. We have such a wonderful chap who comes to do it for us twice a week. We just rake in the rents from those 11 properties, make sure we put them up by 5% every year and watch the bank balance grow. Voila!! I think we've got it made." 

I didn't know how to respond. I could hear her telling me something about how good it is to just sit back in life and let other people do the donkey work, when I felt my thoughts running away elsewhere. The image made me smile. I was sitting on the step in front of my allotment shed. I'd dug and trimmed and weeded all morning. I was drinking a perfect cup of tea before going back home and looking down at the basket of vegetables and herbs I had just picked. As I took off my boots, I caught sight of the line of grit under my nails, and I knew what satisfaction was.