My mom has always found job, more than one would expect or understand, from purchasing produce.
Growing up, I remember sitting in the car at the farmers markets and her coming back, arms overflowing with vegetables, our car already loaded with watermelons.
One summer we lost a peach and an onion in the car for three weeks.
It smelled terrible.
She loves to stop by produce stands on the sides of the road.
She finds some kind of excitement or peace, something, in growing vegetables.
She has a garden of her own as well, of course.
Tomatoes, cucumbers, squashes.
I remember the strawberry patch in the front corner of the backyard at our first house.
I think she gets this excitement from my grandpa.
At 90 he still found a way to plant tomatoes and green beans.
Funny that he ate green beans until he was 90.
It was then we found out that he didn't like them at all.
I think he grew them because the garden gave him something to care for, and beans were an easy way to provide for his family.
On the day my grandpa died, Mom went to the orchard.
Maybe it was to keep herself busy, to keep her mind off things on the way home.
She got watermelons, strawberries and peaches.
She went to the store and bought lettuce and corn.
She got the perfect tomato; I'm not sure where it's from, but it wasn't from her garden.
All she has this year are six unfruiting tomato plants.
She has been busy caring for my grandpa and my grandma, too busy to care for her garden.
So busy, but on the day of his death, she found something in her to provide for me,
the way my grandpa did, eating green beans until he was 90.
Produce, to me from my mother, taken the day of my grandpa's funeral.