Growing Up In Public (part II)

Chapter II

“Flowers reared by a man`s careful art,

of heady scents colored strong of heart.”

Amongst most of his fellow laborers, it was no secret that the Farmer Boy enjoyed a particular pastime of cultivating small flowers in his spare time. He grew them in a sunny corner of his small hovel, with his own tools and materials. The Farmer Boy would return from a long day`s work and relax by tending to the numerous varied blossoms with careful craft of his wits. Moreover, the Farmer Boy gave away these flowers without care to any that so cherished their plain unadorned beauty…

Now though some few of his fellow laborers (including the Foreman Overseer) knew of this venture, they cared not a great deal more than to peruse them in good cheer and offer their compliments. Fewer still did any of the local villagers know or care about this trifling undertaking, save for those of his kin and friendship. However, among the many travelers along the near highway, the Farmer Boy had a devoted following of admirers – wandering travelers from as far as away as across the Great Sea and to the Farthest East.

In the midst of these days did the Farmer Boy`s name come to the attention of a certain peasant named Mrs. Bossy Busybody, a sour old gossip who (it was widely known) reveled in creating trouble and causing mischief. As the Farmer Boy had not worked at Bilkington Farm very long, Mrs. Busybody knew little about him but she knew enough to decide that she didn`t care for him one bit. She thought him vain and proud (which is not itself entirely untrue), and all of the rumors she`d heard about his radical ideas on farming (and agriculture in general) created in her a picture of a young man that didn`t know his place in the world.

Busybody inquired of the Farmer Boy to the local Wiseman, through whom she discovered the Farmer Boy`s side-venture. At the realization of this, Busybody became enraged: “What`s this? Growing flowers, on his own time? The nerve!” and marched straight-away to tell of this transgression to the Hired Hand.

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