I’m not going to lie, as a man, I’m faced with all sorts of trials and tribulations as the years tick on. When did I start sighing whenever I sat down in a comfy chair? When did I realise that skinny jeans really don’t make you ‘down with the kids’, they just crush a gardener’s most prized fruit and veg. And no, Ade, ‘twerking’ isn’t something you do on Twitter.
As our tastes mature, we crave more worthy pleasures. A good cheese. A comfy jumper. The unimaginable excitement from turning the fresh pages of a new Gardeners World magazine so we can read what the God amongst mortals, Monty Don, has to say about hedges.
But I’m proud to be at this stage in my life. I don’t think I’m losing touch with my youth, rather I’m breaking free from its constraints, embarking on a new chapter and realising what makes me happy.
“So what’s with the rant, my soapbox allotmenteer?’’ I hear you ask. Well I shall tell you keen reader.
Like most self-taught gardeners, I’m a sponge, absorbing every new discovery and nugget of information that I can, whether from a book or a passing allotmenteer. But I started thinking a few months back, I want to learn more. Not so I can win the local pub quiz or pit my Jedi gardening skills against Monty Obi-Wan as we lock hoes in a battle of ultimate allotment supremacy while Nigel looks on nonchalantly, chewing his favourite tennis ball. No, gardening is a passion and I want to learn more of this exciting world and unlock more of its secrets.
So I’ve signed myself up to two RHS courses, the first starts in September and runs until next June. And the second starts in February next year, also running until June. Right now I’m choosing my school uniform, a smart pair of wellies, I might even get a sensible haircut.
I just hope the older kids won’t pick on me.