Cherries are my partner, Michele’s, favorite food. A few years ago I gave her a cherry tree for her birthday. (Score one for me on the great presents of a lifetime list.)
We planted it in what we hoped would be the ideal spot in our garden, nurtured it and optimistically dreamed of the day we would pick from the abundant crop it would produce. Local and popular opinion weren’t encouraging that it would flourish in our coastal climate. Much to our delight about four years ago, it started to bear fruit.
We soon discovered that Michele wasn’t the only one who loved cherries when our winged and four legged neighbors started dropping by for frequent snacks. Last year we had a bumper crop and were able to enjoy about a dozen of the luscious gems while the robins, squirrels and raccoons gorged themselves on the rest. I swear the robins were doing a neener-neener as they littered the patio with cherry pits.
I don’t even want to admit how many hours we spent strategizing creative solutions to keep the varmints out. A one-solution-for-all-pesky-critters that didn’t too grossly offend my aesthetic sensibilities seemed an insurmountable task.
After spending more time than I care to admit scheming on this, a flash came one day when we had stopped thinking about it. I suggested wrapping a branch or two in plastic netting to guarantee we’d get at least a few cherries. Michele came up with a way to protect half the tree and leave the other half for the birds.
Surprisingly, it worked. We watched with eagle eyes and eager taste buds as the fruit continued to ripen and the birds (mainly) stuck to their own side.
Last week when the crows swooped in, we knew it was time to harvest. Drop everything right now time to harvest. We were giddy as we picked two colanders full of juicy goodness.
I have two points to make.
First, as with many creative problems, the answers often come when we stop thinking about it and are off doing something else. If you’re stuck on something, take a break from thinking about it. Go for a walk, read something unrelated, go clean out a drawer or corner of your office or take a nap. This is why so many ideas come to us in the shower or while driving.
Second, I’ve recently been thinking about what it means to have enough. As long as we were stuck in how to protect the whole crop, we were stymied. The answer came when we imagined a solution that would give us enough to enjoy. We had plenty, really. Enough for us and some of our two legged friends.
What would it be like if right here, right now we all felt like we had enough?