Sunday, March 23, 2008

Spring is sprung...

The Grass is ris...I wonder where...the birdies is???

An old rhyme my Dad used to say, on occasion.

And today I thought of that as I watched a cardinal in the bushes around our house. And so, in honour perhaps of Easter or Earth Day (yesterday!) or whatever, My Beloved and I decided to tackle the spring clean-up of the garden. It is usually a really big job against which we steele ourselves, but this year it was just no big deal. I didn't resent having to rake leaves nearly as much as I usually do, and we managed to get the whole thing done without so much as one cross word between us!

And this is part of what we had to tackle....

- this is the herb garden - covered, strangled even - by leaves from the fall, rediscovered by the melting of the snow!

And here it is now!:

And this is how it was achieved:

Action shot: My Beloved trimming the 'burning bush'....

Me with the leaf blower/vac - one of the best devices known to wo/man!


So, the job is the same, but the outcome this year was different - no temper tantrums, no frustration and no need for apologies for (my) outbursts. So what's different this year?

Attitude, I guess. As I was in the garden, enjoying the sunshine and lack of snow - raking, leaf vacuuming, pruning etc - I was thinking about Easter (it being Easter Sunday today) and about the traditional way of spending the day: gorging on the hind quarters of a pig and littering the garden with plastic eggs. And it occured to me that it was an odd way of expressing joy for God's world - God, however you perceive Him to be.

Caveat! Caveat!!: neither My Beloved nor I have any particularly strong religious conviction, although we were both raised in the 'embrace' of Christianity, and we don't have children, so the whole plastic egg thing is a mystery to us! And it must be admitted that if we were religious, or if we had children, it's possible that we'd see the whole thing through a different lens but, as it is, it remains inexplicable.

I watched our neighbor's grandchildren collecting the Easter eggs fom her garden and, in my mind's eye, all I could see was the kids in a sweatshop probably in China somewhere, making these bits of plastic tat for pennies a day, so that kids over here can collect them to throw in the trash later tonight. And then they can sit in a landfill for an eternity, not biodegrading, or can find their way to the oceans to be swallowed by a sea creature who'll then die of intestinal complications.

I don't know, perhaps I am a kill-joy, but this seems to be a 'bass-ackwards' (as my associate David is fond of saying) way of celebrating resurrection or Earth Day.

And yes, I know that ham is the traditional way of celebrating Easter. But this is anathema to me too. God - however you perceive Him to be - created this amazing creature - the pig - whose intelligence rivals and even surpasses that of our beloved companions, dogs - and what do we do? We bleed the poor creature to death, dissemble him on a production line and then eat his body parts.

God, in His infinite wisdom, must be weeping.

So what's the alternative? Well, this year we are having 'roasted turkey' seitan (vital-wheat gluten, flour, water, ketchup, nutritional yeast, onion powder, garlic powder, soy sauce - mix, knead and bake!) with lemon/red onion roast potatoes, maple carrots, asparagus, and a mushroom gravy. And I am thrilled at the absence of the pig on our table. :-D

For dessert, we have a triple-chocolate tart I made on Friday from a non-vegan recipe. I converted it rather successfully, so will post the recipe as soon as I manage to type it all out. Try it - you will love it! :)

OK, I have, have, have to email my darling sister, so I will finish here.
But...Stay Vegan, Friends!

No comments: