A THOUSAND WORDS - Alex Waterhouse-Hayward's blog on pictures, plants, politics and whatever else is on his mind.


Rosa 'Mary Rose' Redux
Saturday, June 02, 2007

Rosa 'Mary Rose' made this blog before on June 20, 2006 but when I saw her yesterday afternoon as I watered the garden I had to bring her in for a scan.

In my early 20s when I was still more nerd-like than I am now I had a beautiful girlfriend in Buenos Aires called, Susy Bornstein. My Irish/Argentine cousins and nephews thought I was "funny" since I always showed up at parties alone. Just for once I was going to make a triumphant entrance with my gorgeous Susy. I chose a rugby game between the Buenos Aires rivals CASI (Club Atl├ętico San Isidro) and SIC (San Isidro Club). My nephew Georgito was a star forward for CASI so here was my chance to show off my manly attraction and prove my family wrong. The fact is that none of my family ever met Susy as she always had an excuse for not showing up. My nephew Georgito had the suspicion that Susy was a figment of my imagination. I was not to learn until recently to make the connection with cats, babies and roses and that is that they never perform on demand.

The most often used excuse by Vancouver rosarians, when someone admires one of your rose bushes is, "You should have seen it yesterday before the rains."

My roses are perfect when I am alone with them in the garden. I smell them and pamper them and remove any leaf that may have a trace of black spot. Roses reduce my tension and stress and some years ago when I suffered terrible migraines I noticed that they diminished in late May and June which are the rose blooming months.

I feel a frustration much as I felt all those years ago that I cannot show off my roses in the same way I could not show off my Susy. I am unable to understand how my intoxication with roses finds no common ground with some of my friends. Even Rosemary sort of ignores my roses and puts her effort into her rather rare perennials. While she will admit that my hostas save the garden in August when none of her perennials have much to offer, she will not come out and tell me that the roses are important in our garden.

It was on Sunday that I went to Crystal Pite's work in progress at the Scotia Dance Centre. Here was a noted international dancer and choreographer giving an intimate performance to four of us. She seemed to be one of my roses. Why was it others did not take advantage of this opportunity (and it was free, too)?

This sheer pleasure that I cannot share brings bouts of loneliness which are most acute on a late and perfect afternoon in the garden as it was yesterday.

It ocurred to me that I have many pink roses. The average person would find them all the same. I have heard people comment on David Austin's roses, "So many of them are pink! They look the same."

But each pink rose when viewed not only for its colour and shape, noticed for the quality and sheen of its foliage or enjoyed for its individual scent, is impossible to confuse, one with another.

While my Susy was unique, perhaps a one of a kind Rosa 'Fimbriata' (right) who would not glory at showing up at a rugby game with 20 blondes in tow?


Previous Posts
Rosa 'Mrs. Oakley Fisher' & The Making Of A Snob

Antonio & Ramón de Irureta Goyena

A Beautiful Aberration

Rosa 'Hansa' - Alexandra Elizabeth

Hilary - That Cheerful Welsh Poppy

A Quirky Crystal

Karen McSherry

The French Go Gaga For Ancient Egypt

Jude Law, Athena, The Anesthetists & The Morgue

My Fair Bianca

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