Music, dirt, grubs, pick axe.

There is a clarinet player from France on my roof right now, with his pregnant wife from Germany, who plays violin. Just a little gloating to start the post off.

To tell the truth, I'm fairly exhausted. The clarinet is helping. The firecrackers? Not so much. There is some sort of Catholic feast tomorrow in our part of our Goan village, thus-- firecrackers. Any excuse will do around here, any excuse.

You know when you really want to write a post about the meditation center garden, but you want before and after pictures, and the before pictures are somewhere, on some drive or something, and you keep putting off looking for them, so you never post the photos of the garden?

(An aside- Just now Solo was requesting a snuggle, so I went to lie down beside him for a minute while he drifted off to sleep, and he smelled like watermelon because I let him eat watermelon after his shower tonight, and that's backwards.)

Today I bought a pick axe, which is not pictured here. I need to break up my soil after the heavy rains, and the rakes are not cutting it. (Literally, ha!) A pick axe is what is used in India, for pretty much every type of digging. It felt so intense, driving home with a pick axe on my scooter. A bit overboard, like I was going to dig the foundation of a house, or cut through a glacier, rather than plant some spinach and basil. (Secretly, I also felt very cool. I always do, when I'm buying weird stuff like that.)

Today I also turned my compost pile. (My landlord accidentally threw out last year's compost pile, which would have been perfect by now. I didn't cry, you will be proud to know.) I had to use my hands to turn a lot of it, which was pretty gross, not least because of the million grubs inside it. I have since researched the heck out of grubs in compost, and found that they are not a big deal, although I should probably turn it more often because it might be a bit too wet. It smells great, though, like rich amazing compost and not like rotten food.

I was amazed by how hot it was inside that compost pile. Really, really hot! The bacteria are doing their jobs and dear Lord it is so hot here! You should see the sweat dripping off my face when I'm working in the garden, how I have to take my glasses off because they just fall off if I don't. We wait until four o'clock before we start working, but still. Still.

Solo, sans pants as usual, watches me spread the compost I bought, not the compost I made last year, because my landlord threw it out. Accidentally.

Why are before pictures so hard to find? And why is before so hard to remember? I have to force myself to it, on tired days like today. I say, remember, Rae, how you used to have to walk Solo through the coconut grove for hours? Because he was colicky? Remember all that? Take courage! Everything is so much easier now.

One thing is for sure. I may be happier digging around in this little garden than I have ever been here before.