September 2, 2014

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By Jim Langham

Appreciating the age of wisdom and beauty

The warmth of the past couple of weeks reminds me of one of my most cherished moments with my Grandma Cook, a dear old person, my mother’s mother, who lived with us as I was growing up.

That moment occurred in late March when I was in grade school. Grandma decided that it was time that I learn how to plant my first garden, so she took me to a small plot on the country property where we lived, gave me instructions in spading, hoeing and raking the soil to planting stage. Then, her worn hands of lifetime gardening led the way with instruction on how to plant peas, lettuce, onions and various other early spring vegetables that would become my first planted garden.

That was March; Grandma used to always tell me that when she was younger, people would plant their gardens in March. So I grew up imagining “old fashioned March” as being warmer, spring-like and a time to plant gardens. This spring has seemed to be like the kind of March Grandma referred to as “old-fashioned.”

Last week one day, I was reading through information from the National Weather Service and came across the fact that the two warmest Marches prior to this year were 1907 and 1910, right when Grandma would have been in her prime. “Hmmm,” I said, as I looked at those figures, “so this is what she was talking about. She did know what she was talking about.”