“The rose is a rose from the time it is a seed to the time it dies. Within it, at all times, it contains its whole potential. It seems to be constantly in the process of change: Yet at each state, at each moment, it is perfectly all right as it is.”
~ Paulo Coelho, Warrior of the Light
We used to meet at the rose garden for lunch sometimes when we were still working. I’d pull into the parking lot next to Gerry’s car, he’d climb out with sandwiches and cold drinks, and we’d heard to the rose garden to eat and enjoy a respite in the middle of a busy day.
Now, the reluctant patient struggles to curtail his activity and on this beautiful afternoon we decide a visit to the vegetable garden to water and harvest, followed by a walk through the rose garden, is in order.
We arrive shortly after noon. The fragrance, as we enter the garden, is both heavenly and calming; no man-made perfume could ever come close. A woman dressed in a dark business suit strolls along the path opposite us; she pauses now and then to bend and lift a blossom to her nose. Gerry and I walk, and remember, and pause at blossoms that are especially lovely. He provides shade from the midday sun while I capture a few images with my camera.
We sit for a time on a bench while the sun shines warm on our bodies and the scent of the roses washes over us. I could sit there for a good long time but my husband soon grows restless. This “easing back gradually into regular activity” isn’t easy for him.
We take a meandering path through the park toward the dock that was almost underwater in the spring flood season. Now it’s almost autumn and the river is low. Nearby, the geese are resting up before they leave for their southern flight.
A young man wearing earbuds leans on the railing of the dock doing something with his phone. Look up, I want to tell him. Pay attention and experience this precious moment! An older couple stands farther out on the dock. The woman points at something in the distance and they both look out across the water. The gift of being present comes with age.
“We should do this more often,” I remark to my husband as we walk back through the park toward the car.
We should. We can. We will.
# # #
Phone calls from far away and not so far away.
Homemade soup for lunch.
Bread dough rising.