1 EAGLETON NOTES: Gardening and Music

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Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Gardening and Music

Today dawned and looked promising.  I'm not sure what it looked as though it was promising but it was definitely promising something.


I've been gardening for fortyodd years.  I've done a lot of gardening.  I have moved hundreds, yes hundreds, of tons of soil and stone making gardens.  Did I enjoy it?  Well that's not so easy to answer.  It kept me fit when I had a desk job.  Most people I know who love gardening enjoy it as a therapy.  I've never really enjoyed it.  It's something I do because I have to and because the result gives me satisfaction: satisfaction but not enjoyment.  Until today.  Today I spent a large part of a sunny, windless, cold (and midge-free!) day in the garden.  And I very much enjoyed it.  The situation helps, of course.


By 5.30 this evening I ached.  I did something I rarely do: I ran the spa bath and lay in very hot water  and when the spa didn't drown it out I listened to the symphony that I would take with me to a desert island if I was only allowed one.  Of course I'd never want to make that choice because what I want to listen to depends on my mood - like most people I assume.   In this case though it's a piece of music which connects deeply with me.  It is Dvorak's First Symphony: The Bells of Zlonice.  It's not a particularly popular piece in the concert halls but the second movement contains, for me, some of the most moving phrases.  I don't pretend to have a good musical ear but this is one of the pieces of which I have multiple recordings and actually have an outright favourite: Witold Rowiki's London Symphony Orchestra 1971 recording. 

13 comments:

  1. That first picture looks like a painting! Is it as it was when you took it, or did you do something to it before posting it here?
    As for gardening... never been my thing. I love being in a beautiful garden, but I don't want to do the necessary work :-)
    Whenever I am at my parents' allotment, I much prefer doing all the washing up etc. in the little hut than any of the outside work.

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    1. The first photo is an amalgamation of three photos taken in one burst and combined using Photomatix Light (one of Adrian's pieces of help ages ago).

      This morning, Meike, I almost wish that I'd been doing the washing up yesterday instead. My little legs are tired but it was worth it really.

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  2. With this garden there must be a lot of work put into it, related to how little time you actually spend there... Well, this year, anyway! (How are the fish doing?) - Getting allergic to grass in my teens made me never really long to have a garden of my own, I'm content with a few pots and boxes on my balcony two floors above the lawn (which I don't have to cut myself!)

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    1. There was a lot of work initially because it was bare croft-land on a slope with lots of builders rubble underneath when I moved in. It took 10 or so years to get it as I waned it. The fish are growing like mad thanks Monica.

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  3. What a lovely view, indeed. And I know exactly what you mean about promising mornings - I'm always sad when the full light of day steals the promise away. I was interested that you could spend so much time gardening and not really like it. It set me to wondering if I ever do anything like that. I think I probably put doing up the house in that category. Doing anything to it is like pulling teeth, but I am always glad when it is completed, at vast trouble and expense. Thing is, I can do it in bursts, but couldn't keep doing it constantly. And gardening does require a constant effort. So I am wondering how you managed to keep doing all that gardening for years when all you had to push you on were the nebulous goals of keeping fit and having a lovely garden at the end of it. I mean, they are good goals, but never finally achieved,

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    1. 'Never finally achieved' is like most of the goals and aspirations in my life Jenny. Why should gardening be any different? I should add that I never actually actively disliked gardening I just didn't have a positive like or enjoyment for it - only for the results. I may be changing though if there are more days like yesterday.

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  4. Gardening will capture your heart completely if you allow it to.
    Maybe the symphony playing on some outdoor wireless speakers on a nice sunny, windy, and midge-free day will make a convert of you yet.
    Glad to know that the fish are doing well, who wouldn't in such lovely surroundings.
    Just finished listening to The Bells of Zlonice, and I must say that it evokes peace and tranquility and also a touch of sadness...perhaps a second listen is in order a little later.
    Another hot water spa bath and your aches should be a thing of the past...enjoy.

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    1. I'm so glad you liked The Bells of Zlonice Veronica. Actually I used to play music in the garden as well as all the time in the house. Usually, though, the wind here is too strong and I usually prefer just to listen to the sounds of nature. I'll soon be back on the croquet lawns in NZ with much more regular exercise. That should get me a bit fitter and less prone to aches.

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  5. Well, I thought you were going to say...and when the symphony didn't work - I resulted in a large glass of wine ;) Graham, my mother LOVED gardening - my grandfather did too. I do not. My yard shows that I don't. I just can't seem to enjoy it. Yes, I do like the result but I can't even get myself to find the motivation for gardening; although, if I had time to....yah, maybe not.

    Yours looks delightful and inviting!! That sky is a promising one.

    The hot tub sounds comfy, although...deep down aches don't seem to cooperate with the thought of 'cozy'.

    Love to you and hope that your aches are better when you wake in the morning.

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    1. The large glass of wine went without saying Heather! It was a beautiful Sauvignon Blanc (unusually for me 'cos I usually drink Red). No, I don't see you as a gardening girl either. You'd never find the time anyway!

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    1. Music and Gardening compliment each other beautifully!

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    2. They do Jaz but the wind is usually too strong to allow me to enjoy music outside here on the Island.

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