About a month ago we noticed that some varmint had chewed through the nylon netting we had stretched over the PVC pipe frame we built to cover our ever-bearing strawberries.
Simultaneously we noticed that we were no longer able to harvest any ripe berries. We would see blossoms. We would see white immature berries. But at some point mid-June we stopped seeing ripe berries.
We thought about giving up. We thought about arming ourselves. We thought about constructing concrete barriers six feet deep and six feet high. We did none of those things.
Instead we bought a roll of galvanized steel netting and a spool of wire and did some sewing using the PVC pipe frame for support. Not the sort of needlework to which I am accustomed, I assure you.
I have knit fine lace shawls. I have crocheted tablecloths. I have tatted lace edgings and embroidered linen handkerchiefs. I have even done cross-stitch using my own hair. Granted, during that last odd interlude I was pregnant and a little more than mildly depressed. But I digress. Fine needlework. That’s what I do.
This was not fine needlework. It was hand-bruising, arm-slashing, leg-tearing work. That’s right. It was hot. Brutally so and we sewed jagged-edged galvanized steel netting with wire whilst wearing shorts and t-shirts. Reckless and stupid. No doubt.
However the physical toil we invested in the new fortifications is paying off. Our second July harvest of strawberries was yesterday afternoon. There may even be toothless squirrels and chipmunks gamboling about the neighborhood, pilfering someone else’s ever-bearing strawberries. I am not feeling any remorse about that.
Also, the cut on my leg has almost completely healed over.
To my chagrin, I cannot find a decent digital photograph of Hairpeace, the framed cross-stitch piece above. The design area is approximately 3 x 7½”. I created it in 1996: dyed the linen with tea, stitched the letters with my hair, and used cotton embroidery floss and nylon/acetate blending filament like a sane person for the remainder. Over one thread on 32-count linen, but that’s not too crazy. Is it?