1. 1.
    traveling from place to place, especially working or based in various places for relatively short periods.
    "the peripatetic nature of military life"
    synonyms:nomadic, itinerant, traveling, wandering, roving, roaming, migrant,migratory, unsettled
    "I could never get used to her peripatetic lifestyle"
  2. 2.
  1. 1.
    a person who travels from place to place.
  2. 2.
    an Aristotelian philosopher.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Fortunes of Poetry on the Water and the Trash Heap

If "it is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife," does it not follow that a married man in possession of a wife must be in want of a good fortune? He sure would find it helpful once the responsibilities begin to multiply and the bank balance reveals more evidence of subtraction than addition. Poor men! Well, at least some of them will get extra points for longsuffering. I know mine will.

These young people are more rich than they realize at the moment. I got richer by being able to spend the day with them this past Saturday. Boating and beach time took place on the "sound" side of Pensacola Beach. The water is much calmer there and therefore kid-and-boating-friendly.

While Grandma Martha watched Micah play on the beach, I was the lookout while my daughter-in-law took a wild ride on the tube. For some reason, Alan would not trust any of us women to drive the boat so he could take a turn on the water. I was a little hurt by his decision because I have a lot of experience behind the wheel of a power-boat. He probably remembers the times years ago, living on a lake in Illinois, when I tried to throw his father off balance. It was always done in a spirit of light-hearted fun, honestly!

My daughter-in-law proves that a good woman holds on even when things can get a bit choppy.

On Sunday morning, Sarah and I tackled the thorny problem presented by some Knockout roses. I love these shrubs for their resilience and beauty, but they tend to overstep their boundaries in this Florida climate. The plentiful rain and warmth we have had this summer at home apparently provided ideal growing conditions. I had to be ruthless and trim them severely. I usually perform this task late in the fall or early winter, but I only have a couple of more weeks until I go back to Illinois. I was also concerned that if Hurricane Ike paid us a visit, the shrubs would damage themselves and the screen enclosure by whipping about in the wind.

I know, it looks pitiful now, a veritable piece of destruction, but just give it a few weeks. It will be blooming again and as full as it was by next May, ready for trimming again. Maybe the canna lilies hidden behind its former mass will thank me with an abundance of flowers before I have to leave.

I can understand why Sarah leaves the rose bushes alone, even though she does a great job of maintaining the rest of the yard. Their thorns are fierce enough to penetrate the thickest gloves I have, and she has to be protective of her hands. She makes her living with them as a massage therapist.

We added a lot of stuff to the trash heap, or compost pile, if you prefer. We were rewarded for our hard work by what we found growing there. It was pure poetry.

Though I have grown cypress vine and morning glories before in my Midwest gardens, I have never grown them here in Florida, having found them to be a bit unruly once established. Somehow they managed to find their way to our trash heap, those little blessings on my mess. We usually burn the pile down a bit if it gets too big, but I think I will leave this mess alone for a while, at least until I come home the next time. It is trying so hard to cover up the evidence of my destruction.

"I do not like to boast of my own child, but to be sure, Jane--one does not often see anybody better looking. It is what everybody says. I do not trust my own partiality. When she was only fifteen, there was a gentleman at my brother Gardiner's in town so much in love with her that my sister-in-law was sure he would make her an offer before we came away. But, however, he did not. Perhaps he thought her too young. However, he wrote some verses on her, and very pretty they were."
"And so ended his affection," said Elizabeth impatiently. "There has been many a one, I fancy, overcome in the same way. I wonder who first discovered the efficacy of poetry in driving away love!"
"I have been used to consider poetry as the food of love," said Darcy.
"Of a fine, stout, healthy love it may. Everything nourishes what is strong already. But if it be only a slight, thin sort of inclination, I am convinced that one good sonnet will starve it entirely away."
Darcy only smiled; and the general pause which ensued made Elizabeth tremble lest her mother should be exposing herself again...

--All quoted material borrowed from Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice--


  1. Hello W2W ( I know ... I am incrediably lazy ? LOL) and then there is the spelling issue ..
    I love the quotes you put in your posts .. I saw Mr. Darcy in my minds eye from the BBC series which I loved : )
    I tried Cypress vine this year but for some reason I don't think it like my garden very much .. funny how it and the morning glory turned up in the "trash heap" ? LOL
    Thanks for dropping by my blog .. i would send you some sage .. but you know the customs people at our border .. they would try to smoke it ! LOL

  2. I've never held on to a tube and been dragged behind a boat for fun; thanks for showing me something different.
    Also the fine lines between Darcy and Elizabeth inspire me to read Pride and Prejudice again.

  3. GJ4me, you're not lazy, just sensible. Every keystroke you save adds another day to the life of your wrists. At least I hope it does. I think the birds must have helped out with the seeding of the vines. I have seen both plants on a nearby roadside. The county highway workers are wisely not killing the "weeds" by spreading poison, and so they thrive here and there and everywhere the birds fly. As for the sage, I am amazed at how many varieties there are available now. I will have to look for the one you have featured. It's lovely.

    Terra, who would think that being dragged behind anything at that rate of speed (I think it was 20-25miles per hour) could be so much fun. Thankfully, I'm too decrepit now to attempt any stunts like that anymore. Bouncing around in the boat was enough fun for me. At this point in my life, I'm more into sitting quietly and reading a good book or blogging. The boat ride sure did jog loose some memories of times past, though.

  4. Florida sure does produce some beautiful plants.
    I'm always amazed at how much good it does to prune. The plants bounce back better than ever.

  5. I think sometimes we humans need to undergo some "pruning" as well. At least I know I do. Pride (and yes, even prejudice) tend to distort my outlook as well as personal growth and choke off the places where I could be bearing fruit. I just hope I too can bounce back from this latest pruning episode and come back better than ever. Thanks, Mom, for your visit and insight.

  6. Hi, wanted to visit and thank you for leaving a message on my site.

    Did I read your profile correctly--your husband is looking for oil in Illinois? I never knew we had any here. I have visions of an oil rig in my back yard pumping thousands (maybe millions) of dollars into my bank account;) That day dream will keep me smiling all afternoon.

  7. Sorry to burst your daydream bubble, Marnie, but I think your part of Illinois may be outside the Illinois basin. The basin is literally a bowl of oil deposits concentrated mostly in the southern and eastern part of the state, extending into Indiana. Another hitch in the Jed Clampett (sp.?) vision is the fact that mostt of the property owners around S. Illinois do not own the mineral rights, just the surface rights. Most of those mineral rights were severed back in the 1920s by opportunistic coal mine owners who offered a pittance to the original property owners, often farmers, who were struggling to get by in difficult economic times. Those poor people eventually were literally undermined, and their heirs now, by law, have to permit the oil companies access to their property for drilling purposes. My husband hates that aspect of his job, having to contact the property owners where his drilling prospects are located and let them know a rig will be moving in and setting up shop for a while. They get crop damage compensation, of course, but very little else for having to put up with the inconvenience. The mineral rights issue is a sticky one to be sure, and one we haven't heard the last of yet.

  8. We do have the same morning glory don't we? And it even has the very same type of plant growing in the back. It must be a companion plant because I see it growing with them all the time.
    I also have red cypress vine that grows wild, or did, until the Hurricane took down my fence. I love the lacey look of the leaves.

    Billy's brothers, he has six, used to ride on anything they could drag behind a boat. They are probably lucky to be alive. The young just hae no fear. LOL

  9. That tubing sure looks good! Glad you got the Knockout roses trimmed back too. They will be happier in the long run.

  10. Want to thank you for visiting my blog and commenting. Wanted to let you know also that I understand about the trees in Florida...we lived in Sebastian..east coast next to Vero Beach, Melbourne...during the 2004 and 2005 hit directly by Jeanne and I soooo understand the tree thing. We have another thing in husand is originaly from Chicago..though I've never been to Illinois ever. I've never been to Pensacola, but expect that i will soon as my son will be stationed there with Navy in the next couple of months. I love your blog...and Pride and Prejudice is one of my favs. So glad that you did find me..I visit Kanak alot..she's always got something interesting over there..

  11. Eve, it seems like the best things in life are free. I just spent some more money on plants (annuals and perennials) to fill in here and there around the yard, and I bet they won't be half as lovely, if they survive the winter, as the volunteer plants always are. That cypress vine is a hummingbird favorite, too, by the way. They just love the little red trumpets.

    Tina, thanks for stopping in and commenting. The Knockouts were big enough to almost deck me. They took a lot of time to trim (I have several along the side and front of the house too), but the biannual trimming is a small price to pay for all that beauty.

    Rhonda, we have something else in common. Some members of our family live in Sebastian and Melbourne. We were a bit concerned when Hurricane Fay dumped all that rain there a few weeks ago. I have only been to Chicago a couple of times in my life, and I would recommend a visit there if you can swing it. Downstate is nice too if you like hiking. You can find hiking highlights in some of my older posts.

    I'm sure your son will like it here. The Pensacola NAS is a wonderful place itself to visit with its Naval Aviation History Museum. It has fascinating exhibits, and most of the tour guides are retired pilots themselves, so you know they will make it all very interesting. I hope you enjoy yourself while here, although I know you will have mixed emotions about leaving your son behind. Thank you for visiting. I'm glad I found your blog too.

  12. W2W, how much fun you all had on the water! I find roses intimidating too, but I love them. Sarah must have appreciated your help. Lovely quotation. Jane Austen is the mistress of prose.

  13. Hello, thank you so much for your comment on my diary "Under a hotter Sun." I had a good browse on your blog; enjoyed your garden and loved the tidbits from "Pride and Prejudice." Would love to see you around again. Take care. T.

  14. Sarah, we all enjoyed ourselves, except for my daughter who had to work Saturday. She has her own business but works every other Saturday. And then I made her work with me on Sunday morning! I told her it was good for her to sweat and get rid of toxins. It works better than a sauna and doesn't cost a thing. She just gave me a look like I was a politician or something.

    Thank you, Titania, for coming by for a visit and commenting. You are more than welcome for the same. I am enjoying reading about your new life "down under."

  15. Dear Walk2write,
    Thank you for a fun coffee time this morning. As I read your posts and comments I began to hear your voice.
    It will be fun to get to know you this Autumn and Winter. I do understand the need to trim down rose bushes and my middle section! I am working on it. I too beleive in massage and oils for healthy living. Currently I am receiving a massage once a week as I restore my health.
    Hope Ike was kind to you. I am in Kansas City, Missouri and we are to have some Ike rains!
    Stay safe,

  16. Sherry, sometimes--who am I kidding? all the time--my posts fill the glass halfway as fine whines should but are usually served with a generous helping of cheese to smooth things out a bit. ;>} My daughter has been trying out a new technique on me she has learned in a CEU training session. It's called pranic healing. She is trying to get my energy flow to normalize so my mind/body will heal itself. I'm not sure I understand (believe?)the whole concept just yet, but I have been sleeping better and not needing the chiropractor's treatments for the last couple of weeks.

    So far, Ike is just spinning a little wind and some rain showers toward us. I hope we don't get any farther along in the alphabet with hurricanes this year. I am glad I found your site and look forward to visiting with you again.

  17. One of my favorite books--I always enjoy how you weave poetry or some great prose into your posts.
    I've never been quite sure just how much I could prune my Knockout Roses...glad to see that yours come back even after such a severe pruning. I won't be so worried now about giving mine a good "haircut."
    Your comment to Marnie was very interesting. I knew that there was some oil in southern Illinois--and actually just about an hour south of us--but I didn't know about the drilling rights. That seems really unfair; so, who does the money go to?

  18. Hi Rose! I hope the roses come back. I have never pruned them at this time of the year before, so we'll see what happens. As for the oil drilling, the lucky winners are the ones who own the mineral rights and the company who can convince them to lease the right to drill. The company has to negotiate a contract with the mineral owners as to a certain percentage of the proceeds, which can vary. There are also investors for each prospect drilled who get a certain percentage. Of course, each prospect is a gamble, and not every drilling project becomes a well. There is always the risk of drilling a dry hole even when a prospect looks promising, and even a well that produces a lot of oil at first can drop off to nothing within a few months or years. I hope I didn't mislead you into thinking that the severing of mineral rights has occurred everywhere. There are areas where that has not happened. If you own a lot of property near an area that has been drilled on successfully, it might be a good idea to check into whether you own the subsurface rights so that you can be prepared to negotiate a sweet deal if an oilman comes a-knockin'.