Friday, February 21, 2014
MISTER OWITA'S GUIDE TO GARDENING (CAROL WALL)
Amy Einhorn Books|March 4, 2014|Hardcover|ISBN: 978-0-399-15798-1
MISTER OWITA'S GUIDE TO GARDENING is about a wonderful friendship between Carol Wall and Giles Owita. It's a book about illness and also how we need to learn to not make assumptions.
Carol Wall is a high school teacher living in the United States and is happily married with grown children. Giles Owita also lives in the United Sates, is happily married and has young children but is originally from Kenya.
Carol and her husband never much cared about how their garden looked, it just wasn't a priority in their lives. One day she was admiring a neighbours garden which was breathtaking when she began to have a change of heart. Why subject her community to their mess when everyone else had well maintained yards. Carol noticed a black man working in the neighbours yard and figured she'd ask him to come and speak with her about doing her garden. The woman who owned the home was a master gardener herself so Carol thought Giles must be good if she let him maintain her yard.
Carol assumed because Giles was a yard worker that he was automatically uneducated and probably not very bright. When Carol first met Giles she wasn't overly friendly and fought him on a lot of the ideas he had to improve her garden. Over time they became the best of friends even though Carol was occupied with worry over her cancer returning. She and Giles, although happily married to other people, enjoyed a completely platonic but intimate friendship. As their friendship blossomed and their complete trust in each other grew, they began to reveal private and tragic secrets to each other.
As Carol confided in Giles, Giles too confided in Carol further cementing their relationship. Carol said: "...my conversations with Giles Owita became my ideal postgraduate education, I even took notes..."
This memoir is a very personal account really of two people's lives. And, there is a lot more to Giles Owita than meets the eye. You'll be surprised at what you learn about this charming man from Kenya. We'd all be lucky to meet and befriend a Giles Owita.
I liked the line where Carol wrote: "Fate had sent a professor to my door, and my conversations with him were like a dream class..."
I enjoyed this book thoroughly and will be sharing it with friends and recommending it to other people.