Sanchez Neighbors

tree between our yards

It reminds me of how my neighbor Betty Sanchez, who passed away the same day as Shari Lewis in 1998, in her talks with me over the fence once said, “I feel for you young folks starting out – there are so many things you all feel you need to buy these days, it makes it really hard to keep up.” I realize that Betty and her husband gave me so many very wonderful and useful ‘things,’ the simple things like plants to transplant, water from their irrigation well, sweet handsewn gifts for our daughter … and shining examples of being caring people.

The wonderful simple down to earth practicality of my neighbors of my parents’ generation. Betty and Albert Sanchez grew a chile crop next door in their backyard from their saved seed. They worked with their old water well for irrigating that filled with sand so often in later years – a sure sign of the dropping of the water table. They were the ones so generous with providing the larkspur “Spur,” Yerba Buena, Cholla and Plum Tree transplants from their own yard to ours. Betty deliciously recounted how she cooked los quelites  – the wild lambsquarters – with bacon and the hearts of the red chile. What gifts they gave me. Gracias a Diós por ellos.


4 Responses to “Sanchez Neighbors”

  1. October 2, 2011 at 4:26 pm

    And among some gardeners I know, it continues – online friends who’ve never met in person labeling, mailing, planting heritage seeds, chatting in forums and emails about what has sprouted, what has failed, how to prepare the harvest.

    When I was a child, we had neighbors with those same impulses. When my little plastic wading pool was in the yard, they would come over, test the water. If they deemed it too cool, they would heat a kettle of water and bring it over, mixing it in until the temperature was “just right”.

    Who has time for such generosity today? Too few, I fear.

    • October 4, 2011 at 7:31 pm

      I know a neat garden blog, too, shoreacres. I enjoy their recipes!
      Neat to hear about your neighbors taking care of their young neighbor. We do our ‘giving back’ here online, don’t we though – generosity it is, in your response here. Thank you. Over the fence, it is too few and far between.

  2. October 4, 2011 at 12:10 pm

    I remember “gifts” given to me from neighbors like knowledge of our local area, simple drawings and paintings, an old spade that I hand dug a well with, and the gift of labor in helping us establish our homestead. Many of these fine folks are gone now, but I have much of what they gave us, especially the knowledge. The old spade hangs in the shed without a handle. A reminder of a time when working hard meant working well (no pun intended)!

    • October 4, 2011 at 7:34 pm

      Did that happen when you all first moved in? That is indeed neat knowledge to have. It is good to talk about change, methinks. Talk and share about the generation that preceeded. I am grateful you shared about yours!

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