“Now, my dears,” said old Mrs. Rabbit one morning, “you may go into the fields or down the lane, but don’t go into Mr. McGregor’s garden: your Father had an accident there; he was put in a pie by Mrs. McGregor.”
I got so spoiled at Carol’s house, with those garden boxes up off the ground. Here at the new house we are planting things at ground level, and it is like leaving my most precious valuables out in the yard to be ravaged by the elements and the animals. Just as I’d feared, yesterday the kids came running in to tell me that some of my tomato plants had been compromised. We’d seen a rabbit in the garden the other day, and I suspect that this was the culprit.
Luke is my knight in shining armor when it comes to fencing. C had a phase where he was wandering away from the house, and Luke built me some temporary barriers to at least help slow his progress. Sigh- “My hero!” Not to be outdone, last night he put up a fence around my poor Romas in the hopes that this would give them a fighting chance against the unknown snacker. This morning, I looked out to see a rabbit in the garden again. It was hopping all over the place, apparently confused by the fencing. Big S ran out to shoo it away and check on the tomatoes. “Fourteen,” she came in with the survivor count. I started with eighteen. Yikes.
Seeing that rabbit (I’m guessing it’s the same one both times- he’s found his own Hometown Buffet!) made me think about the Beatrix Potter story we love about naughty Peter Rabbit and the gardener he thwarts, Mr. McGregor. There have been times in my life I could identify best with Peter. Aw, c’mon, it’s only a carrot. He’s got a whole garden full. I’m hungry, and getting what I want is all that matters, right? Lately, though, I am so much more in tune with the gardener, running after that pesky rabbit, rake in the air, angry as anything that he’s getting away. Gardens, and life, take a lot of work. It is frustrating to put in all that effort, only to have it not be appreciated by careless ones around us. Maybe I am getting old and crochety, but planting those tomatoes wasn’t easy.