Destinations Magazine

Tale of Two Springs

By Alternativeeden @markngaz

The working title of this blog post was 'Testicles on My Head'. Gaz was daring me to go ahead with it, and usually I would oblige but at the last minute opted not to. But let me at least explain why which will also explain why I disappeared for almost two weeks.

Tale of Two Springs

I thought this Rheum bud would be appropriate. Just use your imagination...

Since the beginning of this year I had the task of writing an academic paper looming over me and although I was happy enough to ignore it for months the deadline was still fast approaching till it couldn't be set aside any longer. Typical me, nothing like the last minute to get me going! Although I specialise on haematologic (blood) cancers my task was to write about testicular cancer instead, so as to be both a challenge as well as refresh my knowledge seeming that the last time I got involved with anyone affected by it was back in 2008.

Tale of Two Springs

Someone's happy to see me! Even this variegated Beschorneria septentrionalis is getting in on the spring action! 

I'm happy to report that although the regime and treatment pathway hasn't changed much in decades, on the whole it still remains a very curable type of cancer. But before I got to that part boy was it hard work! It was like writing a lengthy blog post but being academic you have to back up everything you say with evidence and research and that was the very hard bit!

So for the past few weeks I had 'testicles on my head' to the point that I just had to shut out anything that will deter my concentration in writing the paper, and that includes blogging. And I really need to get it out of the way as I feel I couldn't move on and enjoy spring until it's over and done with.

Tale of Two Springs

New spikies! Despite the break from blogging plant shopping continued.

Hence the 'tale of two springs'. Although spring has definitely and truly arrived in the garden mentally it won't for me until I've had that task over and done with.

Last Easter bank holiday weekend, which was a four days off from work we managed to do loads in the garden. Nothing major but lots of cutting back and tidying up was done now that plants are showing so many signs of fresh growth. This is an exciting period for all gardeners but as I was distracted my excitement was dampened. Still I carried on doing gardening tasks despite my mind being somewhere else. You really don't need to think much when cutting back dead vegetation and clearing out areas so that was alright.

Tale of Two Springs

Cut off the old to make way for the new - Melianthus major

But I did allow myself some extra distraction and mental break from writing by doing a spot of plant shopping! Crews Hill it was for Easter Sunday as the Gardening Club, being a member's club is exempt from closing on that day when virtually everything else is. So that was handy, plus they had ten percent off on that very long weekend too.
Tale of Two Springs

Tale of Two Springs

Tale of Two Springs

Tale of Two Springs

Tale of Two Springs

We didn't buy much though as it was still essentially early in the year and most of what they had were their usual suspects which we don't go for anymore. But we did go home with a couple of large garden vases that had no drainage holes which would be perfect for growing papyrus in as a summer display.

Tale of Two Springs

Going back to the paper, I finished it last Friday and submitted it, woohoo! That was hard work and won't be rushing to do one again soon. But the best part is I can move on now and my second spring has arrived. I'm baaack!!!

Mark :-)

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