It was a beautiful spring day last week, redbuds were blooming, and I was weeding our potato patch. The henbit and chickweed were making a run for it, trying to spread into the potato beds. Though the potato plants themselves are vigorous, there’s no sense letting those weeds crowd them and steal the nutrients we have worked so hard to get incorporated into the soil. So there I was, with my trusty hoe, scratching the soil.
As the sun climbed higher in the sky, the heat and humidity were building. I had been at it awhile, and my shoulder hurt and my back was starting to ache. Age takes its toll. I was nearing the end of the first hundred-foot row, when I stood up to arch my back and then lean on my hoe for bit. And there they were, a pair of Chipping Sparrows, pecking in the dirt just a few feet away. I stood there quietly as they went about their business, searching for weed seeds in the broken earth. They seemed oblivious to my presence, so soon I went back to my job. And there we were, working side by side. I was killing weeds; they were eating seeds that would otherwise become future weeds. A delightful partnership.
Chipping Sparrow (Wikipedia)
A cloud passed in front of the sun, and a slight breeze cooled my skin. My toil seemed a lot less toilsome. My aches seemed a lot less achy. And life was good.