Sunday, May 15, 2011

Urban gardening

Ali and I spent part of Saturday working in the Angie's List Garden. Ali likes to go because she gets to play in the gym when she gets bored with the dirt. And when she's really lucky, she finds some of the stray cats that have been adopted by the company.

The garden is a fun project led by Kelsey Taylor, our wellness director/trainer. She's not exactly what you would call a country girl, but she's serious about health and is dragging a bunch of us along with her.

She's the person who re-introduced me to my muscle tone and keeps me focused when I want to wander off the work-out reservation. I figure I owe her a few hours in the garden. I may have saved her life Saturday when she picked up a wire that was hanging from the electrical power lines and was encroaching on the garden plot. Well, I didn't exactly save her life. She ignored me when I warned her that she could get zapped if she touched that thing. And it didn't zap her. I still think it was a bad idea to touch it, and I think I might have to ask the Facilities crew what the heck it's doing out there...

Anyway, we dug the garden for the first time last year. This year, we have a bumper crop of Garden Club members, and we had it whipped into shape in record time. It's a little strip of green between parking lots on the edge of Indianapolis' downtown within the Angie's List campus. It always seems like such a little space. Until we get the shovels out. Then it grows by an acre or two.

The first photo is the beginning. Ali and I had to leave before the final box was installed, but this is fairly good look at where we left things.

I'll update you as it goes along. If you're in town this summer and need a little healthy snack, stop by. We might let you snag a little snack. Kelsey might make you do a push-up or two, but it'll be worth it.

We had dinner last night with Judy and Ken Beech, two transplants from Trinidad and parents of Amanda, Alison's best girlfriend at school. They are a hoot. Judy rules her kitchen and watching Jeff worm his way into an apron and manning a skillet was a lesson in covert operations. Another guest who's known them for years was in awe. He just kept saying, "Nobody cooks in Miss Judy's kitchen but Judy."

I spent 90 minutes in the gymn this morning trying to work off the chocolate cake, fried plantains and a rice dish that was the most amazing grain that ever slipped into my mouth. I asked her how she made it and she said, "Oh it's a bit of spices in the pot and some raisins and some corn."

I glared at her. "You don't have a recipe, do you?"

She laughed. "Oh no. I just put this in and that it. It's how we do it."

So I'll never have that rice again unless she invites us back. I'm hoping Jeff's encroachment was actually received as well as it seemed and that Kevin's repeated "Nobody cooks in Miss Judy's kitchen.." was not as life-altering as it seemed to him.

Alison stayed over with Amanda and has yet to make an appearance back here. While she was to have attended church, there was some indication that Miss Judy was taking the girls to the mall. Wish me luck that she'll actually come back home.

Miss Judy has more tricks up her sleeve than her fabulous cooking, and I suspect she may have a genetic connection to the Pied Piper...

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