It is only every seven years or so that Estelle and I have our birthdays over a weekend, she is on the 23rd and I am the 24th. This year two of our daughters and their families came to stay at Over the Mountain for the weekend. It was a wonderful time together for all of us, even though it was quite busy in the Guest house and the Tea garden.
As part of the weekend celebrations, we decided that it would be an excellent opportunity to let each of the three grandchildren plant a tree on the farm. Under the expert guidance of Morne Lochner from Norgarivier Nursery, we bought a number of indigenous tees and a few fig and olive trees earlier in the week. When we asked the eldest grandson which tree he wanted to plant, without hesitation he chose one of the fig trees. To bring some balance, we helped each of the children plant two trees, a White fig tree and a Waterbessie (Syzygium cordatum) tree.
I believe that planting a tree is similar to leaving a lasting legacy. We are all here on earth for a short period of time and most try to get as much packed into their lives as possible. Some decide to not just be takers, but become givers. Givers of their time, their material things, their knowledge, their ideas and creativity or simply of themselves.
Two weeks ago, John Barnard, one of the residents of Herold, who lived here for 30 years, passed away very unexpectedly from a heart attack. We only knew him for a little more than two months, but he befriended us and often brought us vegetables from his garden. At his funeral everyone remembered him as a very caring and giving person, we could see that he left a legacy.
Hopefully all the trees we are now planting here will outlast us and our grandchildren will see them grow into mature trees. I trust that the way we live our lives, our principles, our conduct and our love for God, will outlast us and will continue to impact the lives our children, grandchildren, friends and even our guests, that it will be our legacy long after we have gone.