(Written on 9/10/10)
Tatu tends to be very aware of the status of everything on the berm garden – which things are ready… and which things she wishes were ready, too! It was late afternoon when she and I were interacting on berm, and she had asked for an APPLE. It was too close to dinner so I signed, SORRY CAN’T. Although I wasn’t able to give her anything from the garden I thought we could, at least, talk about things in the garden. So I signed WHAT THAT? to the apple tree.Tatu of course signed APPLE. I asked APPLE WHAT? She said TREE and I agreed, RIGHT.
WHAT THAT?I asked, this time pointing to the tomatoes. She signed RED. “Tomato” is a compound sign – RED and SLICE together make TOMATO. So I asked RED WHAT? Tatu signed TOMATO (RED-SLICE). I told her YES YOU RIGHT!
At this point I thought we could take a tour of the garden, so I asked, TATU YOU WANT LOOK ALL PLANTS? and I started walking away from the tomatoes. I walked all the way to the end of the garden beside the other apple tree. Tatu followed on the ledge. On the way I asked her WHAT THAT? about the flowers, and she signed FLOWER.
Then I asked, WHERE CARROT? Tatu continued toward the carrots and signed THERE.
RIGHT I said and then asked her about the apple tree. After she identified that I headed back and asked about the chives, which Tatu calls ONION GRASS. We passed the carrots and flowers again, and then I paused by the lemon cucumbers. As far as I know, the sign for “cucumber” is like tomato – GREEN-SLICE. However, lemon cucumbers aren’t green! So I asked Tatu, WHAT THAT? and she signed PLANT. I said, YES YOU RIGHT, THAT PLANT. MAYBE YELLOW SLICE? And Tatu said PLANT again.
We got to where we had started, and, once past the tomatoes, we paused by the celery. I do not know the sign for celery so I asked, WHAT THAT? YOU KNOW SIGN? Tatu said PLANT. I laughed and said, YES PLANT THERE.
At the end of the garden, there is a sage plant, which Tatu has called ICE-TREE before – it survives through the winter and sometimes gets snow and ice on it, so it seems to be a sign that she has made up for this particular plant. I asked, WHAT THAT? Tatu replied TREE. I looked at her with a raised brow and was about to ask “what tree?” but she beat me to it and clarified ICE-TREE. (She signs this as a blend, not just ICE and then TREE).