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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

deferred maintenance

Long Forgotten by Ruben Serrano
Long Forgotten by Ruben Serrano



I have a houseplant, an Elephant-Ear Philodendrum named Dumbo, that is 35 years old. Through all these years I could do no wrong with regard to Dumbo's care. But in the last month he has lost numerous stems and leaves and looks weakly. I have one stem rooting, just in case. He needs a new pot and soon. I keep deferring it because the last time I looked for a clay pot large enough for Dumbo I struck out at all sources. If I had to resort to a plastic container I'm afraid the toxins would kill him, but I may need to try that avenue. In any case, when an old friend is in need of attention -- the way Dumbo is now needing my care -- deferred maintenance just isn't in the cards. And, face it, deferred maintenance is just a sloppy form of negligence. Dumbo deserves better. So do our houses, cars, clothes, jobs, and relationships (including our relationship with our Self).

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9 comments:

Beth Niquette said...

Amazing how you were able to make droopy Dumbo into such an exquisite photo!

I hope he lives through it all!

Phivos Nicolaides said...

The last one, "our relationship with our Self", might be the most difficult in practice...

Lydia said...

@Beth- The credit for the exquisite goes to the photographer noted below it! Dumbo, where ill lately, looks tons better than the plant in this picture...and I hope I can prevent him from ever looking like that. We've been together for a lonnnnng time!

@Phivos- Is that true? Right now I'm trying to figure a way to clear all my duties at hand in order to spend a night or two at the beach alone this week, as my annual October trip that began as a memorial to my mother and now has morphed into that time to work on my relationship with my Self.

Kathleen said...

Dear Lydia -
I've thought about you and your month of remembrance. I think it so wise to carve out the time both as a memorial to you mother and as a way to honor your Self. Blessings on your time together. And how tender of you to nurture an "offspring" of Dumbo, just in case. I think Dumbo will always be with you, as will your Mom, as will your Self.

Lydia said...

@Kathleen- Your comments meant so much to me. Just knowing that you are aware of this time is a reminder that all is well.
The rains began today in earnest. Weather report is for this to continue for a week. I may hold off and see if the next week would have some decent weather to walk along the beach.

secret agent woman said...

What a sad photo. Hope Dumbo recovers.

Lydia said...

@secret agent woman- Dumbo doesn't look as sickly as the plant in this shot, but he is ill. Thanks for your get well wishes for my special old friend!

Snowbrush said...

Toxins in plastic pots harm plants? I can't speak for all plants, but my twelve are doing quite well.

Lydia said...

@Snowbrush- What great serendipity having a message from you about this topic! That's great news. I just wasn't sure if there would be a problem for old Dumbo. But I found a wonderful plastic pot last week at a local store. I didn't buy it. Now I'll measure the current pot to make sure the new one would be a size increase and if so I will transplant him. Thanks!