To Combat COVID-19 Boredom, The Traveling Chefs Took Up Gardening


To combat COVID-19 boredom, The Traveling Chefs took up gardening. As things are getting back to normal in most of the United States, it’s time to share with you how they coped with the boredom related to the pandemic that interrupted the lives of all, the world over, including yours and theirs.

You must have read that The Traveling Chefs were considering early retirement in October to travel across the US. Well, COVID-19 has hastened the realization of the former and has prevented them from achieving the latter.


Unable to travel, The Traveling Chefs took up gardening instead to combat COVID-19 boredom. How about you? What has changed in your life during the pandemic? They hope that whatever it was, it was for your betterment.

As for them, they had no idea that this simple new hobby of theirs could have brought them so much joy. Nor did they have any notion that their vegetable garden would have turned out to be a thing of beauty not only to their own eyes but to those of their friends. As a consequence, they have combated and overcame COVID-19 boredom. “You will never be bored Peter,” wrote one of their friends in Facebook after seeing a photo of their garden.


You must have heard before the words “If you build, he will come”, right? Remember the movie entitled Field of Dreams? Well, The Traveling Chefs have built a garden. Then, the birds, bees, dragonflies, butterflies, worms, lady bugs, moths, and squirrels now come with more frequency. All these with the exception of the last gave so much joy to them.

A pair of cardinals made The Traveling Chefs’ garden their own playground. Not a day passes without them making their presence felt. Chef Pedro calls them his birds while Chef Alicia regards the mourning doves her own. These birds along with blue jays, house wrens, hummingbirds, woodpeckers, and many others occasionally bathe in their bird bath.

The first time Chef Pedro saw one of them taking a bath, he was overcame with joy. He told himself it was well worth it. He was referring to the cost of the bird bath. Chef Alicia and he even built the birds a big house which they called “bird condo.”

In addition to the birds and all these amazing creatures, the growing plants provide a constant source of quiet satisfaction and pride to them. They make note of each and every change in them. Every new bud, new flower, new bulb, new fruit, any new sign of growth becomes a source of celebration. Any gardener here? They’re sure you understand.


Being beginners in gardening, The Traveling Chefs had no idea their garden would have turned out beautiful. If Chef Pedro had his way, there would have been no raised beds. It was Chef Alicia who insisted on having them. Her insistence was a right decision both for practical and aesthetic reasons. Here in Fl, the soil is sandy. Not a lot of plants can grow in the sand. Without healthy plants, no garden can be beautiful.

The 4 raised garden beds provided some semblance of symmetry. The addition of two semi-circle concrete benches made the garden inviting. So does the restored wrought iron garden bench which Chef Pedro had originally picked up from a curve nearby, trashed by its owner who failed to see the diamond in the rough. Th ere was no wood when Chef Pedro found it.

At the center of the garden, The Traveling Chefs converted a huge ceramic pot into a fire pit. They use this to cook corn on the cob and Korean bulgogi, from time to time. Sometimes, they’re bold enough to cook dried fish, (a Filipino favorite) wishing each time that their neighbors won’t smell them. Chef Pedro would sometimes throw ground coffee into the fire to deaden its dreaded smell.


As you may have already found out from your own past experience, we wouldn’t know what we can do until we try to do them. The Traveling Chefs have discovered this when they decided to start this vegetable garden. YouTube has been a source of valuable information to them, not only in taking care of their plants but also in the construction of their raised beds.

Is there something you dream of doing yet somehow fear that you’re not up to the task? Just do it for you won’t know what you can do till you start. At the comments below, feel free to share how pandemic has changed your life. Include in your comments the things you wanted to do but haven’t started doing and those you’ve done well.