Gardening Part 2

I’ve had a difficult week or two. It’s been busy, hot, and our team has had some staffing challenges. I went to a few trusted colleagues to get advice on how to deal with a particular staffing issue, but the conversation really started some time ago with another local business manager.


I had been receiving consistently bad service from one particular young person, and finally went to speak to the manager to see if that person was aware of the problem. I am always mindful of how Maple Creek presents itself. We have to put our best foot forward at all times if we want to grow and flourish.


I unfortunately got the expected answer: “You know young people these days.” I mentioned some courses, like Service Best offered through STEC, and the answer was along the lines of “they cost money and the employer won’t fund them and the kids won’t go anyway. We’ve got online courses if they want to do them.” I left feeling like I hadn’t made a difference at all, either to the business, or to that young person who just needed some training and confidence.


So, back to my week. Everyone’s advice I sought said essentially the same thing: “You know young people these days.” I figured the only solution to my particular problem was to have a terminal conversation and make this the next employer’s problem.


But when it came right down to it, I couldn’t do it. I do know young people these days. I know their enthusiasm, their passion, their optimism, their potential. So we had a different conversation, and I hope everything works out.


This year, my garden has gone through a lot. It has endured frost, hail, torrential rain, drought, and neglect. But with a little water and a lot of sun, it’s really only a week behind where it ought to be, and pretty soon it will catch up and probably surpass last year’s efforts. All it took was a little care, a few tough decisions, and lots of love.


Long ago and far away, Dave and I organized First Night celebrations in a couple of Canadian cities. Lots of people came, we had tons of fun, the whole family volunteered and everyone involved worked their butts off. Our motto in those days was, “If it’s going to be, it’s up to me.”


As I sit here on my deck before my workday starts, looking at my flourishing garden and thinking about the choices I’ve made this week, I realize my motto has changed somewhat.


If not me, who? If not now, when?