Hello Card  -  Volume 14  -  Suzanne Card Number 0  -  Sat, May 5, 1990 1:43 PM

The weather's been warming up here, the sky is predictably blue, and my garden, although a little funky, is coming along. There's a stray cat who, I suspect, lives in our garage, and I think the cat has been eating the nasturtiums, sleeping on the pansies and peeing on the alyssum. But certainly, there are worse problems a person can have than a cat interfering with one's gardening efforts.

I find I've been enjoying gardening most at odd times, like at night, and it's funny how often people passing by will stop to talk with a person pulling out weeds in the dark. San Francisco has its attributes but it's not the friendliest place I've ever lived. People aren't generally as suspicious of each other as they are in a place like New York, but there's a city atmosphere of guardedness among strangers.

So it surprises me that passers by so often comment or stop to talk without invitation, as though they know me from somewhere. Sometimes they're just shooting the breeze, sometimes they get into heavier stuff, like one man described the death of his mother in detail, and two men explained why their divorces had left them so bitter. The divorce stories seemed to parallel each other (wives having better lawyers and therefore getting most of the stuff) and I thought it was too bad I hadn't started a sign-in sheet so I could match people up with each other, because it seemed apparent that neither of these guys had anyone else to talk to.

But I wondered why they'd picked me. Did I seem like Mother Earth because I was out there in the garden pulling weeds? I mean, I'm not overweight and I don't have a lot of wrinkles yet, and Mother Earth is not who I strive to be.

Anyway, I've been a little sad since Michael has left for his world traveling adventures. I met a literary agent recently who I'm interested in, but he appears to be more interested in my work than in me. I guess I shouldn't complain, but I don't have much faith that I'm going to get anywhere with my short stories. I think I'm going to have to write something longer first, so I'd rather just go out with the guy for now and not have him represent me.

We made plans to get together twice and although he seemed enthusiastic he cancelled both times, once for being sick and the other for being in a time crunch with work, both of which seemed like valid excuses, although I wasn't very understanding about it the second time, so I don't imagine there's going to be a third try unless I initiate it. So I've been working on some new stories to send to him, which is good because then even if he never wants to go out with me I'll still have something to show for my efforts.

Recently I hurt my back, which has curtailed my activity and made it hard for me to sit for long periods of time. It happened over nothing more dramatic than my sitting down in my chair at work, in the same way I always sit down in any chair, and I felt something move kind of oddly back there, and ended up flat on my back for a week. I guess it's pretty much all right now except for aching once in a while, and the worst part about that isn't the annoyance of it so much as that it makes me feel very old.