My hands (and feet) are often dirty, and I definitely have a “passion for gardening,” the subtitle of this month’s Garden Bloggers Book Club selection. So I got my grubby mitts on a copy of fellow Austinite Robin Chotzinoff‘s 1996 book People with Dirty Hands and read it on my recent road-trip vacation.
A series of portraits of people obsessed with gardening, with stories of her own life mixed in, Robin’s book is by turns humorous, quirky, and poignant. She’s a good storyteller and deeply curious about people. I enjoyed her glimpses into the lives of passionate gardeners and her exploration of why some of us love to have our hands buried in the dirt.
For me, it’s best summed up by this quote from Robin’s gardening mentor, her Aunt Cookie:
“It’s very strange,” she says. “I get terribly distracted. I wander around deadheading, planting this, planting that. I’m out there for a couple of hours, oh, at least. And if I think, I think very intensely and very intently about exactly what I’m doing. I try to think of more important things, but I can’t.”
If you’re a passionate gardener too, you’ll know exactly what she means.
Check back with Carol at May Dreams Gardens for links to other posts about this book.
Pale pavonia ( Pavonia hastata)
All material Â© 2006-2008 by Pam Penick for Digging. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited.