Friday, 12 October 2007

Al Gore, Persistence and Bringing Plants inside for the Winter

It is raining this morning, and we have great need of rain. The temperatures are dropping too, which means I should begin to bring the plants in. All of them can stand a few nights around 8-10 C (in the high 40s F, I guess) and I want to keep them outside in the wet as long as possible. Last year my three big hibiscus (all over 5 feet high) came down with aphids around March, and I lost one. My hopes this year are that if they are well washed by rain before they come in, they won’t have as many insect eggs on them to hatch out when the days grow longer.

Of course, bringing plants in means getting ready the space in windows where they will pass the winter—washing the panes and the woodwork, making sure the floor has a good coat of wax on it, all that dumb housecleaning stuff. Since I really don’t like housework, I’ve been giving myself a task to do a day. How can I complain about 30-45 minutes of work, I ask myself.

I can’t. But if I am tempted to slack off, I am going to try to remember the lesson brought home this morning about the value of persistence when the Nobel Prize for Peace was announced—Al Gore and the UN working group on climate change. Gore has been on the case for nearly 30 years, and despite many setbacks, has continued to question and uncover and, yes, preach.

You can hardly compare cleaning house with the decades of work that Gore has undertaken, but I don’t think it’s too far-fetched to use him as an example when I’m down on my hands and knees cleaning. And certainly the fact that this year I'm bringing the plants in a week later than last year underscores just what he's been talking about for so long

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