I cradle my coffee cup in my hands. I enjoy the silence. The kids are at their summer club and I have a few free hours. A fine layer of dust coats the furniture in the living room. I contemplate getting up to get a duster. I could fold up the laundry I tell myself. Or clean the bathroom. Go for a run. Get some shopping. Prepare dinner. Phone a friend. My options are plenty.

Instead I sip my coffee and take a deep breath. The sky outside is blue and clear save for a few wispy clouds high overhead. The yellow ‘For Sale ‘ sign across the street stands out boldly against the red brick house.  There’s no movement at the windows. No car in the drive. The elderly couple that lived there have gone. The lady died last year and the gentleman passed away a few months back. I didn’t know them well. They were quiet, kept themselves to themselves as we say. Their windows always gleamed. Their car was always polished. I’m not quite sure what they made of the noisy family across the street with the fingerprint marked windows and driveway full of weeds! They looked after their home and they seemed to look after one another. I hope they were happy.

They always tended their garden. I sit in my own house and note how beautiful their little patch of front garden looks. It is in full bloom. Bees are busy at work. Flowers spill out through the fence and I admire the beauty this couple created. It is sad when a life ends. As I say, I didn’t know this couple well but I did catch snippets of their life through the daily comings and goings of life. As I enjoy the silence and sunshine beaming through my own front window the fruitfulness of the elderly couple’s garden whispers to my spirit. ‘What legacy will you leave?’…’When you are no longer here what beauty will you leave for others to enjoy and remember?’…’Are you living your life in a way that others can admire?’ My heart is challenged.

I’m glad I decided to not be busy today. That I allowed my body, mind and spirit to halt in the present. That I was able to savour visible beauty, to have time to ponder and be grateful, that I was challenged by the legacy of the little old couple across the road.

I hope that a new family moves in soon. I hope they get to see the beautiful garden. That they note the years of work tending to the various plants and flowers. I hope they get to see the the little patch of glory in full bloom and that they continue to nurture what was begun many years before. Now that would be a pretty thing to behold!

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