Sunday brought another 10 inches of wet heavy snow. It was pretty and peaceful as I looked across the back yard, but I wondered when there would be a sign of spring.
"Oh no! " a little voice complained."Not more snow! "
The peaceful moment was over.
"What's the problem, Farmer Small?" I asked.
"That groundhog is an idiot! Spring isn't coming -why people listen to that rodent is beyond me!"
Since I agreed with Farmer Small, I didn't have much to add to his rant. It didn't matter because he wasn't finished.
"This stinks! My tomatoes are sprouting. They'll need to be outside soon, and there's still snow."
"They look good, Farmer Small. Have you told the Grumpy Farmer that they've sprouted?"
"Nope," he said.
"I'm not giving him my gardening secrets. He can grow his own tomatoes."
"There weren't any seeds in the present you gave him."
"Heh,heh,heh," he laughed as he walked away,
Farmer Small is a scary little dude.
"Hey Farmer Small, where were you yesterday?"
"I went down to celebrate the Grumpy Farmer's birthday with him. "
"Oh right," I said. "I was going to send him a card."
"That's pretty lame," said Farmer Small. "I got him a present."
"What did you get him?" I asked.
"A great present!" said Farmer Small. " You know how he grows things in cans? I got him a greenhouse with soil pellets."
"That sounds nice, " I said. "What seeds are in there?"
"Seeds?" asked Farmer Small innocently.
"Did you tell him that it doesn't come with seeds?"
"Not yet," said Farmer Small.
Hmmm. I watched as Famer Small walked by the tomato plant in the can that the Grumpy Farmer had given him for Christmas. Nothing had sprouted yet. I suspect that it may be a long time before the Grumpy Farmer hears that his gift didn't come with seeds.
It was early morning and there was a strange noise coming from the kitchen. I got up to investigate and found the kitchen strewn with empty candy boxes, candy hearts and paper. Farmer Small was wielding a large pair of scissors.
"Farmer Small, what are you doing?"
"Celebrating Valentine's Day," he said.
"Who is your valentine?"
He gave me a look of confusion.
"You're supposed to have a valentine?"
"Most people have a special someone to celebrate with."
"Just one person?" he asked.
"Usually," I said. "Unless you are an old school Mormon."
"But I love everyone!"
That was a new and unexpected development. I decided to test it out a little.
"Do you love the Grumpy Farmer?" I asked.
"Ok," I said, "who else do you love?"
He hesitated. "Does the dog count as a valentine?"
"Of course,"I said. "Anyone else?"
"I said I love everybody!!!!" he yelled.
It could have been the candy talking. But it is possible that Farmer Small does love everybody. There is a big heart encased in his small plastic body. Happy Valentine's Day from your valentine - Farmer Small.
Farmer Small and tomatoes in a can.
I was watching the Superbowl when I heard a small voice. "Excuse me - are you busy?"
Farmer Small was sounding much more polite than usual. Something was up.
"I was watching the game, but the power is out so there's a delay. Did you need something?"
"Remember when you said I got a present from the Grumpy Farmer? "
That explained the polite inquiry. I retrieved it and placed it in front of him.
"He got me a can?"
"Not exactly. It's a tomato plant."
"In a can?" asked Farmer Small "He grows stuff in cans? That explains a lot about his garden."
He scowled as he considered the Grumpy Farmer's gift and then gave it a little kick.
"This is a dumb Christmas present."
"Maybe you should try gratitude. It's the only Christmas present you got. And you probably shouldn't have made fun of his tomatoes ."
"Fine. I'm gonna grow it!"
"You know, I said, sometimes plants in stunt packaging don't grow too well."
"I can grow anything!"
Clearly Farmer Small's confidence had not abandoned him in the New Year.
"So, when should I be expecting fresh tomatoes to eat?" I asked
"About three months."
Farmer Small shot me a look. "I'm a farmer, not a miracle worker. Maybe you should try gratitude."
Gratitude. Hmmm. Ouch.