Everyone in our neighbourhood received a letter last fall informing us that fibre optic cable for high-speed internet would be installed sometime in the future. We had to give consent before our lawns would be dug up for its installation. Of course, I agreed but I added to my reply email, “Please don’t dig up my flower beds!”
I knew the installation company would do what they had to do. I also knew I was in the wrong here . . . sort of, anyways. You see I had dug up the grass in the majority of the boulevard to plant flowers. A lot of flowers!
Being part-Italian, I worried about my garden. I knew worrying wouldn’t change any course of action but I couldn’t help it. I was born a worrier!
There was no mistaking it as the days grew closer to the lawn, and possibly, gardens being ripped up. While snow was still on the ground, my lawn was spray painted three different colours: green, red, and orange. I thought, “Well, this isn’t going to take long at all if they’re spray painting the snow. They’ll have to move fast before the snow melts!”
Not quite so fast, but not terribly slow, either. As the snow melted away, my lawn became adorned with yellow, red and blue flags. I figured “blue” designated a buried water line, but that was as far as I knew.
I knew instantly the minute the workers began their project on my yard.
I had been sound asleep after working midnights when I heard what seemed like large trucks right next to me in the bedroom. I later learned, from the markings on my lawn, that the workers had been drilling right outside my bedroom window. No wonder I woke up!
It was now early spring and the first flowers–crocuses–were popping up out of the ground. Being a camera nut, I snapped a few photos.
Two days later, I saw this:
I was SOOOOOO relieved they had left my flowers undisturbed. Snow fences placed around other deep holes dotted my lawn in ten spots. I was truly amazed at how the workers had taken care to avoid my flower beds. I believed they must be gardeners themselves.
Over the duration of a week, much of the work was completed and at least half of the holes were now filled with coarse dirt. My lawn looked like a cemetery, with fresh graves that had been dug and filled.
I was out doing yard work when my dog, Sophie, started to bark. That’s nothing unusual as she’s pretty territorial for a little ball of white fluff.
I turned from where I was on my hands and knees in a flower bed to see why she was barking. I noticed one of the installation workers. He put his hands up in the air, and in a tone of surrender, said, “Hey, we did our best!”
I reassured him, “You’re not kidding! You missed all of my flowers! Were you involved in that?”
He grinned a broad smile. One of his front teeth was missing but he looked so happy, I couldn’t help but smile back at him. “Yup, that was all my doing. My buddy wanted to move the flowers to another spot but I told him, ‘You can’t do that! Look at this yard. All this woman needs is a stream flowing through it, stocked with trout. It’s practically perfect! The woman planted those flowers there for a reason and we’re not moving them.’”
I thanked him profusely. My garden beds curve in and out from the curb, like a double “S” shape. The workers had dug their holes strategically avoiding any of the gardens except one, and in that one, they had avoided the blooming crocuses.
The man knelt down to offer scratches to Sophie and then said, “We’ll keep coming by to check on these filled holes. When the dirt settles more, we’ll add some really good soil and seed it. It’ll look just fine again, you’ll see.”
I asked if there were plans to install one of those ugly metal plates, about three feet in width, reading MNSI, on my lawn. After all, there were still snow fences around three holes in the front yard of my corner lot.
He chuckled and answered me, “That’s what everybody wants to know! Nope! None for you!”
I told him I felt like I had won the lottery. I already had a post office box and a fire hydrant on my lawn. Wasn’t that enough?
He left and I thought of how my hubby and I pray for our daughters and their families every night. To put good people in their path. Well, whaddya know? Apparently, someone was put directly in my path. A grinning man looking out for a woman he had never met was set right down in my winding garden path.
Now, it was my turn to chuckle. The night before, my hubby and I had ordered Chinese food. My fortune cookie read:
I know that much is true!