#4

Cultivate a Secret Garden

I’d rather not say too much. After all, it is a secret. But you can plant your own secret garden — a hobby, a small indulgence, a pleasure, a journal.

Sometimes I feel my life is so public — everyone knows everything. I give so much to so many. This is my one little private thing.

A secret garden is fragile, yet mustn’t be fussed over.

You mustn’t plant it in the middle of a big open filed. It must be hidden and sheltered — a little hard to find.

There is a secret garden at Skenewood, my husband’s family house. You have to lean way out over a balcony to see it. It is close to the wall. It’s hard to prune or weed, but once you find it — wow — it’s a little miracle.

Keep your secret garden close to the chest, like a handful of aces.

Whenever I have told my friends about my seven rules for living, and I rattle them off, this is the one that prompts inquiry.

“Let’s go back to Number Four — a secret garden?”

No. Sorry. And say no more.

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