Tuesday, November 3, 2009

...and speaking of planting the seeds, last night we prepared Providence for spring. Around midnight, seven of us headed out to the ugly, abandoned, blighted parts of the city. We were waging war on the ugliness, and our weapons were shovels, spoons, and a large paper bag full of plump, tender little bulbs.

In the larger vacant lots we used the shovels to break up the ground for planting. This worked well in some spots. But in many places the shovels were often thwarted by rocks, gravel, trash, and broken glass. For this, we turned to the spoons. Using these smaller "shovels" we were able to remove debris and make a hospitable place for delicate young roots. The spoons also came in handy when we were excavating little plots of dirt around abandoned warehouses and the soil between chunks of cracked asphalt. Although we were all prepared for confrontation, we were not once harassed by the police. We never stayed in one location for very long, and quickly moved from place to place, under cover of darkness. A policeman did drive by once, and slowed down as he passed, but all he saw was Alex straddling a bike and me, standing with spoon in hand. Who knows what he thought was going on.

Anyway, we must have planted over a hundred bulbs in that part of the city. I'm not sure we'll be able to find our planting spots again, so it's possible that the bulbs will bloom in the spring and we won't ever see them. I guess it's our little gift. I hope someone will stumble upon them (someone who needs some flowers in their life), and that they're pleasantly surprised.

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