AyeshaMonday, September 25, 2006
We are expected to notice and glorify the young and the perfect. We lust after shiny new cars - Porsche Boxters and try to prolong it all with Botox. Our wooden floors have been Varathaned to perfection. The idea of using special slippers (so as to not mark the old floor) when we visited Iolani Palace, the official residence of King Kalakaua and Queen Liliuokalani, in Honolulu, seems quaint now to me as I look into my garden and compare two separate mopheads from the same bush of my Hydrangea macrophylla 'Ayesha'. This mophead is so different from the others (I have over 35 varieties of hydrangea and 6 species) that I can agree with many who want to place this delicate plant in a separate species. The Ayesha, above left is a younger flower while the other bloomed earlier in the season and it is going green.
What makes hydrangeas so beautiful is the transformation from youth to old age. A human lifetime in one season is there for me to observe and enjoy. When I look at the old photographs of Rosemary and me from 40 years ago now, my nostalgia is modified by my understanding that beauty, like a hydrangea inflorescence, lasts much longer than I used to think.