I picked a basketful of Calendula flowers today. It is like picking little orange suns, you have to be grateful for the warmth of each of them. Soft petals surround a blob of pollen that calls on bees and butterflies. Two days from now the orange army will be renewed, and I will fill my basket again.
My sister uses them to make soaps and salve. They turn out orange and the deep bitter but pleasant fragrance transfers smoothly from flowers to the things she makes.
We are now in the middle of Transylvania, among hills with tufty tops that hold an intensely blue sky midday and an equally intense pink during sunsets. Countless rainbows must’ve dripped colors all over my sister’s garden, it’s that colorful. A good place to be.
We pick mint and lemon balm too, stop to smell the roses along the way and notice some tiny fluffy clouds gathering towards the west. A storm’s coming tonight, the weather people said. Storms here are powerful and many of them often turn into hail.
Just like hurricanes and tornadoes in other parts of the world, storms here, way more powerful than ever before, are signs of the environmental chipping we cause with many of our actions. Awareness should come from somewhere and lamenting or blaming is never the answer.
Beauty is compelling though and provided that we each remember Mahatma Gandhi’s “be the change you want to see in the world,” gardens and deserts alike can continue to exhale their colors and fragrances, and the storms to come will not be regarded as threats but blessings. The way we had it for so long.
Here’s hoping that my sister’s garden, yours too, the wildflower-brimming mountains I hiked a few days ago and all the wild and beautiful places we all have yet to see, understand and be grateful for, will continue to feed bees and butterflies so they can feed us too…