Posted in Change, Critters, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Fire, Garden, Gifts, Gratitude, Life, Maryland, Mindfulness, Nature, Perception, Photography, Quotes, Spirit, Spring, Walking & Wandering, Water, Weather, Wonder

The flowers are insane this year

A touch of sunlight.

The ‘what should be’ never did exist, but people keep trying to live up to it. There is no ‘what should be,’ there is only what is.

~ Lenny Bruce

In every age “the good old days” were a myth. No one ever thought they were good at the time. For every age has consisted of crises that seemed intolerable to the people who lived through them.

~ Brooks Atkinson

Pops of red in all the greenery.

Nostalgia.  From two Greek words.  Nostos meaning returns home or homecoming, and algos meaning painNostos was the theme of “The Odyssey,” Odysseus wanting to find his way back home.  I think people forget the ending of that story and that all was not as Odysseus left it when he went off to war.

Hosta in light and shadow.

I have friends, acquaintances, and family members who yearn for a golden past, a past that might not have existed beyond what they see in their mind’s eye.  I sometimes wonder if I am not romantic enough or imaginative enough for nostalgia.  Don’t get me wrong.  I love singing along to an old song or occasionally slipping into an old memory.  It’s just that I don’t see it as being better than the present moment.  It’s true there are all kinds of things wrong in the present world, but there are also all kinds of wonderful things in the present world.

A gift of the morning.

I wonder if nostalgia, especially the nostalgia that has slipped into our politics, is a result of continuing to see things through the lens of childhood.  A kind of Peter Pan sickness.  I’ve read article after article about how those who are most likely to vote for an authoritarian are those who want to be told what is right and what is wrong and what to do.  They are looking for a parent, so to speak.  I can see how that might be true of some folks I know.  Adulthood, and the responsibilities of adulthood, can be so hard.  It’s something I think a lot of us want to escape from time to time.

Before the surrender.

There is another way to see nostalgia:

Nostalgia is not indulgence. Nostalgia tells us we are in the presence of imminent revelation, about to break through the present structures held together by the way we have remembered: something we thought we understood but that we are now about to fully understand, something already lived but not fully lived, issuing not from our future but from something already experienced; something that was important, but something to which we did not grant importance enough, something now wanting to be lived again, at the depth to which it first invited us but which we originally refused. Nostalgia is not an immersion in the past, nostalgia is the first annunciation that the past as we know it is coming to an end.

~ David Whyte, Consolations: The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words 

I like to think, to hope, that we are on the verge of some kind of breakthrough.  I recently heard someone say that maybe we’re in the midst of another Enlightenment but being in the midst of it, we can’t see it.

Two of the herd.

Spring has been crazy this year.  Everything has been growing so fast and furious.  A few weeks ago the cherry trees were weighed down with blossoms.  Now they are filled with small fruit.  The peonies, irises, and roses have more blooms than I’ve seen in the time we’ve been here.

I need a wider wide-angle lens to get all the peonies into one photo. Or a bit more distance from them.

Mother Nature appears to be in a hurry to show us all the wonders of spring.

Not a particularly good photo, but I wanted you to see how full the rose bush is this year.

I’m not sure we’ll get a vegetable garden in this year.  We’re hoping to have some grading in front of the pond done, and want to use the dirt from that in the garden.  But this is the Eastern Shore and we’re on Eastern Shore time which means the guy will show up when he shows up.  We got an estimate from one guy two years ago, and another from another guy just a month or so ago.  It remains to be seen who will show up first.  We might still be waiting next year.  Or the year after that.

The many.

In the meantime, the weather continues to warm, the grass grows, and maybe I’ll use some of the big pots in the greenhouse and grow some tomatoes on the deck this year.  It’s better than nothing at all.  We did plant lettuces in the long planter on the deck, something we did last year and it worked out really well.  All I have to do is walk out the back door to pick some.  Laziness is no excuse, and I often need that sort of thing to keep from making excuses.

I love how delicate the petals of the peonies are. You can almost see through them.

I reckon that’s about it from the Wabi-Sabi Ranch on this cloudy Saturday.  There is rain on the way, possibly thunderstorms.  It’s been darkening outside throughout the afternoon and it looks like it will be here soon.  I don’t think we’ll see the sunset but if we did, it would be at 8:03 PM and I’d suggest we watch from the Point where the breeze will be helpful.  I’ll keep an eye out and meet you there if things change.

Be good, be kind, be loving.  Just Be.  🙂  And in case I don’t get back here tomorrow, Happy Mother’s Day to all you moms out there.

This. Just, this.

A few of the 10,000 reasons to be happy:  1,066) The beauty of spring.  1,067) The scent of peonies.  1,068) The end of asparagus season (because I’ve had my fill!).  1,069) The way learning grows on you long after you’ve taken a class or course.  1,070) All the possibilities, and the places where they converge.

The new arbor by the flower garden.


Robin is a photographer, artist, writer, yoga teacher, sometime poet, wife, mom, grandma, daughter, sister, friend, and occasional traveler currently living on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. She shares her daily walks and meanders, a lot of quotes, some of her artwork, and a lot of her photography here on Ye Olde Blogge. Older posts can be found at Life in the Bogs, her previous blog. Robin and her husband are (still!) in the midst of renovating the house and cleaning up the property they refer to as the Wabi-Sabi Ranch, 35 acres that include marsh, a dock on a tidal creek, meadows, and woodlands. Every day brings new discoveries.

31 thoughts on “The flowers are insane this year

  1. Too early here for flowers. I have one crabapple tree making pretty and lilacs beginning to set buds. Nostalgia? I sort of think of that as remembering things the way we wish they had been. Like watching Leave it to Beaver with his perfect parents.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have never been able to get lilacs to grow for me, Carol, and they are one of my favorite spring flowers in terms of scent. I don’t know why, but they always die. Leave it to Beaver is such a great example. I have friends who seem to think all parents should be perfectly perfect in that way (even though they were not Leave it to Beaver parents themselves back in their own day).

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I think you’re right about nostalgia. The mind only reminds the best – it has a selective memory.
    Your peonies and roses are lovely. Mine are slowly gaining height. We’ve had a couple of warm, sunny days this week and that helps, though we’re still cool (not complaining!). We’re supposed to get a lot of rain tomorrow. I feel like I’m running hard just to stay in place in the garden. I have to take it one day at a time. Living in the present, right? 🙂 I stop frequently to just take it all in – blue sky and green growth everywhere, and the delicious fresh air.
    Happy Mother’s Day to you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Eliza. Same to you. ❤

      It’s raining here today. The pattern we’ve been having seems like one of those summers when it’s going to be hard to get ahead of things because of the rain. You’re right. Live in the present. 🙂 Besides, I’m kind of enjoying having a rainy day as an excuse to laze around.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Your flowers are so gorgeous. The profusion of bloom in the mid-Atlantic in the spring always astonishes me. Looks like you’re enjoying it. As for nostalgia, never had any myself, and the quotes give a certain enlightenment about what makes people (or might make them) nostalgic. And of course, as Eliza notes, it’s probably selective memory…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Lisa. 🙂 I think you and Eliza are right about selective memory. Memory is such a tricky thing. I’m not sure why we humans trust it.

      The flowers are amazing this year. My peonies and irises didn’t put out many blooms last year so I’m astounded at what’s happening now. Maybe all I needed to do was leave them alone. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I think people who get wrapped up in how things used to be so much better aren’t happy in the now along with the fact that many nostalgia junkies romanticize how things were. I have a relatively unhappy now grown family member who insists high school was the best time of her life. I tell her, nicely, she’s doing this being in the present thing all wrong then. 🙂

    The people who I know who like President Orange, which is what I thought of with the authoritarian comment, are fear-based people who don’t take responsibility for their mistakes. I’m still gathering unscientific evidence on what else connects them to each other and to people like our president. It’s like studying another world. It’s terrifying, but also, in the word of Spock, fascinating. Plus, I think you have to know what you’re dealing with to do anything about it (and/or to protect yourself). If we are in an Enlightenment, that will be nice to discover. I personally am in one. There are people I won’t allow in my world any longer on a deep level. It’s not just a difference of political views, which I can tolerate and am even interested in. What we’re dealing with is on a whole other level. If you support that and that guy who represents it, then I can’t have you in my life. It’s toxic. Period.

    I think Mother Nature, with all her Spring beauty, is trying to make up for it raining almost the whole summer last year. It worked. I forgive her.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lots of interesting stuff in your comment, Tara. Thank you. 🙂

      I particularly like what you said about being in a personal Enlightenment period. I suspect there are many of us who have been going through the same thing. My hope is that it is enough, and that there are enough of us, to tilt things the other way.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. All the flowers! All the flowers! So beautiful, Robin. I can almost smell them through their images here.
    I agree with the quotations and your comments on nostalgia. People do tend to believe in a golden time that never was. All this remember when memes–I suspect they’re posted mainly by white people who forget that back in the “good old days” African-Americans couldn’t vote in some places, or go to certain schools, or even drink from some water fountains. And before that, all women were denied rights. My mom couldn’t get credit on her own. I saw one post the other day that actually said something like remember when the president was respected. . . and other nonsense. People [often willingly] forget the past, and some are just too ignorant to know it. Stepping down from soapbox now. 🙂
    Flowers! Deer!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Merril. 🙂 I feel the same way about the flowers! And the deer!

      Great point about how people forget those things. I will keep that in mind the next time I see a “remember when” meme passed around. NPR brought up the link to this old article today:

      It’s about the good old days when women were not allowed to dine alone in public.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I have noticed some that are in what they call nostalgia are really suffering from resentment, re-feeeeeeeeeeling a time when they wanted to be right (and thought they were right) and someone told them they were wrong and took that away–segregation, perhaps. And NOW, they keep pining and remembering and being snippy about what they still see as a slight, not having grown beyond, or even noticed defects of character that are glaring to all others.
    Disease of perception says if only i could get it back the way i liked it, i wanted it, all would be great/wonderful/perfect.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That sounds about right, Eliza. There has been a lot of “hooray! We don’t have to be politically correct anymore!” as a rallying cry of freedom to be as hateful as you like. (I realize mentioning political correctness can open a whole ‘nother can of worms, but won’t go there. For now.)


  7. Robin, these flowers are voluptuously gorgeous – wow! We’ve had copious rain here and a similar abundance of bloom, though we are behind you by a week or two. And thank you for reframing the nostalgia perspective – beautifully done.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I mowed the grass yesterday, in 30 something dreary cold. But I noticed that my bleeding heart and the forget-me-nots are blooming! I haven’t been out to look because it’s so darn cold and it rains every day. So I’m glad I had to mow! But YOUR flowers are beautiful!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Dawn. The flowers really are amazing this year. I’m glad to hear spring is finally making an appearance of some kind up your way. You’ve reminded me, too, that I want to plant some bleeding heart. Every winter I think about that and every spring, I forget. Maybe I need forget-me-nots, too. 🙂


  9. I’m not convinced that the past it was better, just that perhaps there were more secrets and less said. More rules and roles, so people knew what lane they were supposed to be in. But that doesn’t mean it was the right lane.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think that too, Kay, about secrets and rules and roles. Perhaps that’s what those who are so nostalgic miss — the rules, the roles, and knowing their place.


  10. I think the flowers are especially lush this year too! Your photos are just beautiful, and love your insightful thoughts, as always. Hope you had a wonderful Mother’s Day, I certainly did! Love to you both!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Fascinating post all ’round, Robin (oh dear… sorry about that!) The quotes are most interesting as is that enlightenment idea.

    My lilacs are still buds, my tulips still closed but my rhododendrons are riotous!

    Liked by 1 person

Comments are delightful and always appreciated. I will respond when I can (life is keeping me busy!), and/or come around to visit you at your place soon. Thank you!

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