I’ve been away helping my mother in her garden again. She’s in the process of moving house and the garden needed a little tidying up. One of the things that was needed was to sweep up some of the autumn leaves that have started to accumulate at her front door.
There are only a few so far and it was easy to do, with the aid of my father’s trusty leaf grabbers.
Dad was always one for gadgets and these grabbers were probably his favourite garden tools. He used them every autumn in his battle with the leaves. In their previous house the battle was unrelenting and had a particular edge. Their house had no garden, just a small, flower-filled patio. Despite this, all the trees from the neighbourhood would drop their leaves and the wind would bring them to his front door. Dad would sweep them up and the next day there would be more, piling up and making a mess. When he discovered the grabbers, he was almost able to keep them at bay, but the battle raged every autumn.
Then my parents moved to a new house, literally round the corner from the old one. A smaller, more sensible cottage, all on one level, suitable for an older couple thinking about the future, but this time with a garden and a very productive apple tree. I’ve blogged about the apples before – here. The grabbers would be useful for the apple leaves, which Dad didn’t mind so much. At least they belonged to his tree and there were apples as well. What he hadn’t realised, was that the leaves from all the streets round about would follow him round the corner to his new front door. He swore the winds had changed so that, instead of piling up outside his old house, they now came to the new one. So the grabbers came out again.
My mother has never been so bothered about the leaves. She is more of a flower person, concentrating on keeping her pots looking nice. Here’s some from last year
So, since my father died, the leaves just pile up in the autumn until the wind blows them down the street. When I was doing my little bit of tidying at the weekend, I used my father’s grabbers and cleared the leaves from the front door. A couple of hours later, they were back.
The wind, or my father’s spirit, is still bringing them round the corner to land at the door. When my mother moves, I wonder if the leaves will come too.