Gardening is an awesome way to make a living but like all jobs it has its downsides. Sometimes these downsides are the flip side of what makes being a gardener so great.
1) It’s my job. This means that five days a week, all year round I get to go and do gardening and I get paid for it! Can you believe how lucky I am? No, me either. However it’s my job. And that means I do it 8-4.30 every day, with a half-hour break at 10.30 and another at 1, whether I want to or not. Even if the weather’s horrendous, my back aches and digging is absolutely the last thing I want to do.
2) It’s not my garden. Hey I get to go to the garden centre, peruse the nursery stock lists and order seeds to my heart’s content with someone else’s money! How cool is that? On the other hand if I have a crazy-mad idea to try out I probably can’t. I’d love a bed of poisonous plants (just out of interest you understand) but in a garden open to the public it’s just asking for trouble.
3) It’s active. Oh ye gods the backache, knee twinges, achy muscles and bone deep tiredness some days when I just want to sit on a bale in the barn. On the other hand it keeps me fit (well, apart from the back and knee pain!) and although I have far too many muscles to conform to the current female ‘beauty’ standard of looking akin to a handful of twigs and some skin, it keeps me slender too. Who needs expensive gym membership? Plus there’s the sheer pleasure of doing physical work.
4) Everyone’s a gardener. Well ok lots of people are. This means there’s always someone willing to tell you you’re doing it wrong. On the other hand it means there are always people who are delighted by your garden, ask advice and generally share their enthusiasm with you.
5) The weather. Some days the sun smiles on me, if there is rain it is gentle and the breeze is delicately scented. I might as well be in heaven. Other days there is horizontal hail. My least favourite is hot weather. Cold weather can be dealt with through the right clothing and keeping active. There is no escape from hot weather. I have had mild sunstroke and dehydration more times than I can count but have avoided hypothermia thus far. Unlike my sister who throws herself down icy rivers in a glorified bucket for fun (she’s an outdoor instructor and does a lot of kayaking).
Do any of you have a job you love? What do you hate about it? Any gardeners? Am I a moany-whingy-pants?