One more trip around the sun

Published 11:56 am Thursday, April 25, 2024

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“There are many tired gardeners, but I’ve seldom met old gardeners. I know many elderly gardeners, but the majority are young at heart. Gardening simply does not allow one to be mentally old because too many hopes and dreams are yet to be realized. The one absolute of gardeners is faith. Regardless of how bad past gardens have been, every gardener believes that next year’s will be better. It is easy to age when there is nothing to believe in, nothing to hope for; gardeners, however, simply refuse to grow up.” ~ Allan Armitage


Here it is: the infamous Medicare Birthday this cool sunlit April morning. I’ve fixed a cup of apricot tea and degenerate French toast with maple syrup as I sashay around in a pair of iris-blue Duluth garden overalls. Hey, if Duluth overalls are good enough for Saluda’s Queen of Gardening Susan Casey, they’re good enough for me. I’d quizzed Susan last summer about hers and how she liked them, grilling her on every detail. After she ‘fessed up to owning five pairs, I figured they just might be THE thing. 

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Every year to celebrate another trip around the sun, I pick myself out ONE thing (well maybe two if the measly bank account allows) and those overalls were it. (Besides, they were on sale AND free shipping!) 

The green garden cart waits outside. Meanwhile, I figure it’s a good day to be grateful for actually getting to mile-marker 65. Especially after the last year of dancing with the Big C. In my way of thinking (which does get harder for some reason), getting up (a gift in itself) and pulling on iris-blue overalls is a promise, a bit of hope. A symbol of not giving in or up. Dear Reader, I end up savoring the unconventional celebration: friends drop by during the day with prosecco, brownies, and goodies. 

During all that, I get some gift plants planted, inhale a pint of farm-fresh strawberries, peek at fuzzy baby chickadees, and by late afternoon, sneak in a few chapters of “The Secret Lives of Booksellers and Librarians” on the porch. 

I’ll have more fancy celebrations ahead, but at this point in life, there is a deliciousness to being simple of wants, to delighting in blue overalls, friends, and sweet strawberries on a spring day, channeling my inner 8-year-old. Maybe that IS the thing. 


  • At Saluda Library on May 4, local artist Linda Seagroves will discuss her work at a reception from 10-12. Her art is featured through the end of May. 
  • Saluda Community Land Trust’s next “Walks in the Woods” will be on May 5 to the Old Home Place at the Dart-McCutcheon property with a 19th-century homestead and fields. This walk is not open to the public and requires specific permission. Meet at Saluda Library’s parking lot at 2 p.m. to carpool. Visit or call 828-749-1560 for information. SCLT’s annual meeting/dinner is at Saluda Center on May 1, 5:30-7:30. 
  • Saluda Sympathy goes to the family of Jeff Jenkins. Well-known at Saluda School, the library, and arts organizations in Tryon, Jeff leaves a big hole in our community. I hope to write a column soon about some of his attributes. If ever there was a person to admire for kindness, intellect, humor and loyalty, Jeff would be the one!  


Happy April Birthday to Melody Gibson, Dave Prudhomme, Kaye Vazquez, Cindy Keeter, Hope Pace, Diane Pace, Greaton Sellers, Clay Arrington, Bonnie Bardos, Luther Connor, Gary Pace, Doug Honeycutt, Taylor Thompson, Loretta Cook, Elizabeth Taylor, Laura Morgan, Roberta Cart, Joan Beddingfield, Anne Lee, Mabel Pace, Mary Jo Wannamaker and Joan Mondrick. 

Feel free to contact me at, (828) 817-6765, P.O. Box 331, Saluda, NC 28773, Facebook, or visit