Why doesn’t this cost thousands of dollars?
It is certainly beautiful enough to warrent it, don’t you think? I’ve never seen such a thing; the dappled random colors on the flat open faces of the flowers. There was a “special” on orchids yesterday and there was no question that it was coming home with me. The spots of color look so hand done, don’t they? I could look at it all day. What was happening in Homedepot? Had they overstocked for Thanksgiving and then got left with blooms they were unlikely to sell? One chap was packing them into his cart by the dozen. There were the usual very beautiful white and pale or dark pinks ones. There were a couple of salmon colored ones and some tending to brown. This one though made me gasp. I elbowed my way past the bargain hunter who was probably going to sell themself for more money so I could squeeze in and get my hands on it before he nabbed it. I started thinking what this would have cost forty years ago. Well, it probably wouldn’t even have existed. No hybridizer would have created it. I’ve never seen one like it. Perhaps there are loads of people who will scoff at my ignorance and tutt, “Of course, they’ve been on the market for years.” That’s a bit like wondering why anyone would be facinated by a new baby. There are, after all, loads of them about. I suddenly remembered my mother who had a corsage of pale brown and ivory orchids to go on her dress the day I got married. I expect my father paid a pretty penny for that corsage. It went beautifully with her creamy yellow dress trimmed with brown beaded braid. She had quite the hat too. Why were things so elegant then? Well, I know there were plenty of ineligant things, uncomfortable things, painful and tragic things. All that would be swept aside when my mother was attending “an occasion”. Well, you could get away with it in those days. People would think you were mad if you dressed like that now. I suppose I’m enough of my mother’s daughter to have bought a new hat for the winter – oh, just a wollen berret. It’s a soft grey and she always told me it was a good shape for my face, pulled right over on one side mind! I remember her having a red velvet one. She went on a trip to New York and wore it into a bar. She was very surprised that a chic New York woman in the bar came over and made a comment about her hat and even asked to try it on! My mother pretended to be shocked by such American manners but you could see she was really pleased. My father must have been over the moon. He loved to dress her up and she could carry it off.
Imagine, this melting flower made me think of all that. Where are they now, those two who liked to go to New York for a few days in October, where are the flowers she wore or the berrets, the clothes and the jewels?
I have a bit of a knack with orchids. I make them bloom a second and third time – never quite as fully as when they come ” manufactured” our of the greenhouse, but somehow I like the second flowering. It’s more natural, less of a product. What a miracle this orchid is, isn’t it? It’s looking at me with its many faces, calling up those long gone and making me look forward for how I’ll take care of it as I take care of my others. Just this dappled flower.