I used to hate to take the trash out when I was a kid. I’m not sure why. It was no big deal really but I always wondered why, out of five children, the chore always fell to me. It seemed to me like it did. I could say it was because it was a boy’s job but my little brother was a boy and he never took the trash out. And besides gender roles never seemed to apply in my family. I mean I was always in the dishwashing rotation with my sisters. Somethings never change. So here I am years later still taking the trash out. Alone. I guess that’s my choice. I mean I’ve never asked my wife to take a turn at it. I used to ask our children… but when you want it done now guess who’s going to do o it? What you allow is what will continue.
Truth be told, I really don’t mind taking the trash out because the route from the house to the trashcan leads right by the vineyard. I know the shortest distance between two points is a straight line but nowadays the trash is seldom a straight shot from the back door. The path always deviates through the vineyard. I like to walk through the vineyard every chance I get. It gives me a good feeling inside to walk among living growing vines. It’s encouraging; causing me to look ahead and think positively about what is to come as I envision the fruit that will be there before long. I walk though the vineyard first thing in the morning, before the sun rises. I park across the yard so I must walk through the vineyard to go in the house or to get to the car. It is even one of the very last things I do at night . . . yes, I know its dark at night. I hope my wife hasn’t told anyone this but I actually brush my teeth in the vineyard. True story! I have an electric toothbrush – per dentist’s recommendation – which takes two minutes to run through it’s cycles. So I walk through the vineyard while my Oral B is doing its thing. Don’t laugh. What do you do while you brush? Stand in front of the mirror making faces? C’mon. Redeem the time!
Actually walking through the vineyard is important to do with regularity. Its been said that in life you don’t get what you expect, you get what you inspect. I would say that if you want what you expect, you’d better inspect. What you monitor will grow and what you don’t monitor will grow. So what do you want to grow? A pest or disease can spread in a hurry. Early detection is key. That’s true in the vineyard, in my spiritual life, with my physical body, my marriage, my business. So I walk through the vineyard on a regular basis – every chance I get. And, yes I do talk to the vines! When I see something I do something. Remember what you allow is what will continue. What does inspection look like you ask? Really? I could write about it here but the post would become too long and if you’re smart enough to find this blog, you’re smart enough to know. But if you need some help call me. We’ll talk.
I remember when I was about eight years old. Sometimes during the winter my Mom would tell me to take the trash out after supper and it would already be dark outside. At that house taking the trash out meant a thirty yard trip to a dumpster that was shared by about six other apartments. To an eight year old, thirty yards is a long way to go when its dark and you’re alone and frightened. Of course I couldn’t let on that I was frightened. I hit the door running. If you’re scared and you think something is in the bushes waiting to jump out, you don’t walk slowly looking in every bush. You haul…. I bet I made that thirty yard dash in fifteen seconds. Now taking out the trash takes fifteen minutes…. at least!