Wednesday, July 22, 2020


There was always a garden plot (to me it seemed like a field) on the farm where I was raised. My parents enjoyed tending to the plants, as well as enjoying the plot's produce. Green peas and sweet corn were field crops for the local cannery, so those did not consume garden space. Hours of heat, humidity, and biting insects remain etched in my mind when I think about gardening.

Summer Squash
A colorful array of vegetables now compliments most of my meals. The diverse tints, textures, and tastes are a sensory explosion. Long gone are the traditional vegetables of my youth. Yes, some meals consisted only of corn on the cob! Now kale, eggplant, brussel sprouts, swiss chard, beets, summer and winter squash, carrots, cabbage, and broccoli are in the dietary rotation. The availability and variety in the grocer's produce section makes this a reality.

Early this spring I noticed information about a local CSA (community supported agriculture). After as bit of investigation money was sent to secure a weekly half-share box that continues into the fall. Local, a worthwhile job and skills training organization, easy to access, and reasonably priced ticked all of the boxes for me. Being a few weeks into a blissful vegetable coma, I remembered something from my youthful gardening experience: seasonality. How many yellow, patty pan, and zucchini squash can a person consume? Recipes have been exhausted. Shredded zucchini in zip-top freezer bags are tucked into the corners of the freezer. My friends fail to reply to text messages about summer squash giveaways.

A mid-60's rock band used Hebrew Wisdom Literature as the basis for one of their hits. "Turn, Turn, Turn" was made popular by The Byrds. The third chapter of Ecclesiastes states, "There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven." (New International Version)

Local CSA
The present reality of availability and variety (not only for vegetables) has placed seasonality into the category of boredom. Attention spans have shortened. Palates have expanded. The expectation of new and novel determine everything from media to medicine and education to business. I, too have become reliant upon a vast array of stimuli to sense fullness in life.

Seasonality is a forgotten entry into serenity. Enjoying what is present; seeing and savoring each day; discovering meaning in the minute and  overlooked grounds me in gratitude. I find that constantly seeking the next new thing fails to provide fullness, instead it produces frustration, The philosopher, Epictetus wrote, "Those who are wise do not grieve for things which they have not, but rejoice in those which they have."

I will savor and rejoice in the summer squash. The taste, the texture, the curvature of the produce, the various hues and striations, and its simplicity are qualities to cherish. There is a time for every activity. I will revel in seasonality. There is no rush.

I also produce video reflections. Click this link for my You Tube Channel.

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