Where We Have Ended Up

“I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I’ve ended up where I needed to be.” – Douglas Adams.

“Homeward Bound desperately needs help with their Memorial Gardens.” These were the words written in the November 2011 Homeward Bound Newsletter, recounting two years of fits and starts, and multiple set-backs in the establishment of the Homeward Bound Memorial Garden.

Volunteer groups had been mobilized, and projects started, but without a dedicated effort, nature quickly erased all that had been accomplished.

Soon to be garden

“By the time the gardens dried up enough to work in, we couldn’t see a single plant that was planted last year; everything was overgrown with 4‐foot tall star thistle and weeds that the rain brought out. Trying to mow the weeds in the pathways was almost futile because they had grown so tall.”

By November, 2011, the plea went out:

“The volunteers have slowly faded away again. We need to find a way to maintain the gardens on a regular basis and make it worthwhile for volunteers to come back. So, we have decided to have volunteers sponsor one or more of the garden beds themselves.”

The article stated that volunteers would only need to come once a month “on whatever schedule works for you.” Grateful to Homeward Bound for our own adopted Bella and Jackson, I had always been interested in volunteering but had difficulty juggling other commitments while contributing on a schedule that accommodated the organization’s needs. A lover of gardening, this seemed ideal.

Now, I look back and smile.

What was supposed to be a “once a month” visit has turned into at least weekly trips – and occasionally, as many as three. It’s not whatever schedule works for us – but the schedule that the gardens demanded to maintain forward momentum.

It is most definitely not where I intended to go. But it is very much where I needed to be.

“More in a garden grows than what the gardener sows.” – Spanish Proverb. I think I’ve used this quote before, but it is so appropriate here.

New gardening skills; friendships; community. These have all grown in a season of working in the Memorial Garden, along with pride in all that we have accomplished, together. And of course, all my new blogging buddies!

I look forward every week to our workdays and the opportunity to visit with pups as well as volunteers. I enjoy sharing our progress with all of you; benefiting from your advice and encouragement.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for you to make a huge difference to the Homeward Bound Memorial Gardens and what it means to all of our Golden friends.”

Absolutely, positively, true.

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I am a nascent gardener, rescuer, and photographer, chronicling the journey of the dogs at Homeward Bound Golden Retriever Rescue and Sanctuary near Sacramento, CA - and the Memorial Garden we have devoted to them.

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