We live in a bucolic neighborhood of 19th century homes and well tended gardens. We bought our house from three elderly maiden sisters who had some peculiar ideas. One of them was to tear out the gorgeous old growth azaleas and replace them with bushes that would fit right into a Dr. Suess landscape.
We are not gardeners. In fact, I would rather clean a toilet than weed, but I had casually expressed the opinion that one of the bushes would flower if only it were properly pruned. I then promptly left town on a business trip.
While I was gone, our daughter L came home and saw J wielding an enormous pair of shears. Did I mention this bush has a prominent position on our front lawn? You can’t miss it on the way to the front door. The bush was already halfway demolished. J was vigorously cutting from the bottom. Foliage was strewn everywhere and ugly little brown nubs were exposed.
L said to J, “What are you doing?” J said, “Mom hates the bush, so I’m getting rid of it.” L was concerned. She thought this was crazy Alzheimer’s behavior that she had never before witnessed. So she called her friend, M, who had experience with Alzheimer’s disease. M said, “If cutting down the bush makes J happy, let her have the bush.” The next time M came to visit, she said, “J certainly did a thorough job on that bush.”
And the miracle is: the bush grew back, ugly as ever.
(Tip of the keyboard to L. It is, after all, her story.)