An update on another one of George's flowers that 'was'...Here is a picture of the progression towards the next step in the metamorphasis from 'flower' to 'fruit'. Look at those two little drops of necter...Mmmmm, yum yum...And see how this is getting more bulbous as the days progress...eventually this will pretty much be completely round like a ball....
And then, two days later (5/28), there was another open flower! Hooray! And once again, in a very difficult position to photograph, but...I got it! And then I got a slightly-to-the-side- view which had the bonus of having the bulbous flower just to it's right, showing a few necter drops just at the top of that pod...More yum yum.... Oh, how I wish just one flower would open on George where I would not have to become a contortionist to get a really good picture! (I know that passers-by, if they see me, must wonder 'what the hell is that woman doing?') If I'm lucky there might be one or two where I only have to get up on a small ladder, again!
Other flowers are bursting forth in my garden, too...these are such incredibly colorful flowers...I love watching this progression, too.... The above was a few days ago (5/27, I think)...all these buds looking like they are going to burst forth any moment....and they are doing just that... This was on 5/28, in the morning, and they are beginning to truly burst forth as you can see....and then, later that afternoon...5/28, this is what I saw, below. And then on 5/29...some of these gorgeous flowers have opened even more than the day before as you can see in this next picture below...the size of these flowers are somewhere between a nickel and a quarter...and they are perfection.... Now, that's a beautiful creation of nature....such a shocking pink and yet more delicate a color once they are wide open as they are, above.... And here they are, above, the afternoon of 5/30....All Open. All Beautiful. All Extrorinary. Nature just knocks me out.
In the early days of my Cactus & Succulant addiction, I met some really wonderful people who raised cactus and succulants and sold them to the public. I began this Cactus journey 20 years ago and most of those people that I met back then in those first 6 years or so are dead now.
One of the things I learned from all of them is that everything flowers. Everything. One has to be aware and really look or you might just miss the flowers. At first, you might not even recognize that they are flowers because often they do not look like flowers as we have known them---well, that is before becoming acquainted with these kinds of plants. The above is a Euphorbia...and the plant arms themselves are about as big around as a thick cigar...the arms can get two feet high before branching with new arms on the arms, all of which grow straight up....Beautiful little flowers, aren't they?
And another beautiful plant with exquisite little flowers is just below...I've posted this plant and it's flowers before, but I hadn't gotten as close as I got just the other day... The size of these flowers is no bigger than a small child's pinky nail....but the are perfectly formed even though they are sooooo very small...I am aware that I am repeating certain information and I do this for the new readers who might not be familiar with any of this...
And does anyone remember this little new baby which I posted some time in March, I think? Well, the picture was taken March 24th...and this dear little baby was not even an inch long at that time.... Well, now, exactly two months later, it has grown to look like this...! It is between three and four inches long in this photograph and growing pretty fast now...No, this is not a flower, but it is further evidence of this glorious hopeful time of year....flowers, flowers, flowers and new growth, new growth, new growth. It is everywhere in my garden....and I truly love it! (I guess you all know that by now, huh?)
More will be forthcoming, as always...
was and still is a part of one of the 9 Townships that made up Great Neck, Kings Point, which was at the other end of town from where we lived in Thomastown. (Our house was in a little area of Thomaston known as Belgrave Square where all the streets were named for streets in Belgrave Square, London---like Grovesner's Place, Brompton Road, Buckingham Place, and Pont Street, which was the street our house was on.)
Memorial Day always brings up memories of all the soldiers lost, in all the many wars this country has fought, since it first began...and of course, this year I think of all the soldiers lost in this current war in Iraq. The soldiers lost and the many soldiers wounded, too. Killed In Action. That is the phrase used by The Government. "We regret to inform you....", that is how the telegram begins. The dreaded telegram with this terrible terrible news. We had a War Memorial in Great Neck for all those lost in World War 1, (On The Village Green, as already mentioned), and another for all those lost in World War 2, which was very near the Great Neck Train Station. It was on the street level as you approached the station by car....I thought it was quite beautiful and it always put a lump in my throat too, even as a small child. Of course, I cannot find a photograph of that War Memorial, but here is this incredibly impressive and moving Memorial for World War II in Washington, D.C. A fitting Memorial for a war that the country really got behind. No war is a good war. But some wars, it seems, are necessary though the losses are incredibly painful to those who's loved one's have died. Everywhere in our Capitol there is evidence of the "Honoring" of the dead. I think the most poignant evidence are these two images. And this one, too.... And, maybe the most poignant image of all is this one... The words on the tomb of The Unknown Soldier say what Memorial day is all about better than I ever could. Let me quote these words and leave you with this thought before I do: Memorial Day is about remembering and honoring those men and women who have given their lives to preserve our rights and our freedoms. They gave their lives for all of us, and in a very specific way, they gave their lives so that each of us can sit here and write our blogs and say whatever we damn well please. A high price to pay for these hard fought freedom's, I know.
Well, I for one, thank them all with all my heart, and say 'Bless You' on this Memorial Day, 2006.
Here is the quote:
"Beneath this stone
Repose the Bones of Two Thousand One Hundred and Eleven Unknown Soldiers
Gathered After The War
From the Fields of Bull Run, and the Route to the Rappahannock.
Their Remains Could Not Be Identified. But Their Names and Deaths are
Recorded in the Archives of Their Country; And It's Grateful Citizens
Honor Them as of Their Noble Army of Martyrs. May They Rest in Peace!
September, A.D. 1866
We Must Never Ever Forget
What We Have Lost
To Have Gained
***UPDATE: I just read the most wonderful post by "Ex Scienta Veritas"...it is incredibly moving and something not to be missed on this Memorial Day. Please, do yourself a favor and go over and read this post and click on the photographs, too....I have put the link right on his name...so pass your curser over it and you will see the shadow...just click and it will take you right there...1:54pm***
Dana is next to Kim and Cory is on the far right in this photograph. These two women, Kim & Tanya, are pretty amazing people and these two little girls have grown into incredible young women themselves. Cory has an MBA and holds a very important job as an investment counselor taking care of just one very important client's portfolio for the company she works for. An extremely responsible job, to say the least. She is smart as a whip and a very beautiful young woman, too, like her mother and her Grandmother and her sisters, (and by the way, Aaron, Kim's Grandson and Dana and Cory and Cohen's brother, is a very handsome devil, too...They are all very very bright young people. Aaron is going to school to finish his MBA and Dana is a Doctor Of Pediatrics, about to go to Africa for six months to work with Pediatric AIDS patients. This is one of the smartest most beautiful family's it is my privelage to know and love. And they are also all really lovely caring human beings. Tanya and Henry have done a magnifent job as parents. Incidentally Cory (with her husband and new little offspring), just gave birth to a little girl at the end of April. I would love to get a picture of the four generations, now. But that may not be able to happen for some time, with Dana going to Africa and Cory and Cohen living in San Francisco, plus, Kim, who had been here in L.A. for the last nine months just returned to New York where her other home is...
I love this next picture. It is such fun and they are all having such a wonderful time here... Dana, Tanya, Kim, and Cory. Four beauty's! Kim was very very young when she had Tanya. I mean very young. In her early teens. So she has always said she feels they grew up together. She has also said she feels that Tanya is the most wonderful human being and that she had nothing to do with that...that Tanya just 'came in that way'. I love that. And, Tanya IS a wonderful human being...
Bridget, Betty and Jo Gorman....Seemah was in the kitchen putting thisbeautiful
I am tired, but very happy that Seemah came up with this idea and so generously offered to bring and make the lunch. So, Betty's 87th Birthday is here and now the celebrations are over and she can get back to work. Bridget, Betty, Lee, and Dianne are all doing a show called "Nunsense" at a theatre here in L.A., for two weeks starting on June 8th through June 18th. Eighty-Seven years old and still working! God Bless Her!
***NOTE: With my new Template, the links to things are very subtle. You pass your curser over things you think might have a link and you will see a shadow behind it and then you know it does have a link. And on a another note of interest, Betty's book is available in paperback at Amazon.com...the link was on the word 'book' on yesterdays birthday post. It is a wonderful book...and I think you will enjoy it.***
***UPDATE NOTE: Danny Miller has written a lovely tribute to Betty Garrett today and has written a lot about her career...go take a look if you have time...it is very informative...(remember, pass your curser over his name...the link will be there...)***6pm
This is a snapshot I took on Betty's birthday in 2001 when she was playing on Broadway in Stephen Sondheim's "FOLLIES"...That year her birthday fell on a Wednesday and she had a Matinee and Evening performance. So we went across the street from The Belasco for dinner between shows. Her two sons, Garrett on the left and Andy on the right, her cousin Carol and me. We had all flown in from California especially for her birthday....Carol and I went to both the matinee and evening show that day. Betty was fantastic. She sang "Broadway Baby". Right after the matinee, we were in the dressing room...(the very same drsssing room that was Betty's back when we were doing "Spoon River" and had to move from The Booth to The Belasco....amazing, amazing...it looked just about the same too, all those years later...) Betty shared the dressing room with Marge Champion during the run and at that matinee Patti Lupone had come to see the show and had come backstage to visit someone she knew in the cast. She stopped to introduce herself to Betty and Marge and I said I'd love to get a picture of the three of them. Patti Lupone was more excited than anyone. I did send her a copy of this photograph. BTW Betty's swetshirt says, "age isn't important unless your a cheese"...appropriate saying on one's birthday, wouldn't you say?
This next photograph was taken backstage in Betty's dressing room when she did "Meet Me In St. Louis" some years before...it was opening night and we were going to the opening night party. It was a wonderful special night in so very many ways. Betty's son Garrett met his future wife Karen that night...(Karen was in the show, too). I had the joy of performing their wedding ceremony when they married a few years later....that was a great day, too! I love this picture...We were all so happy to be there and wanted the show to be a big big hit. It did not get good reviews but it ran for about six months anyway. Audiences loved it and Betty was delightful in it! I came back to New York another three times during the run...once again at Christmas and then again to visit my brother-in-law who was in the hospital dying...and then once again for his funeral. So I got to see part of the show three more times...
And last but not least...here is Betty's book...it's available in paperback and it is a great great read...Betty is a true inspiration in so very many ways, not the least of which is that she is still performing. Singing and acting and completely involved in many many things despite her age. In fact, I think 'performomg' is what keeps her going. She is so alive on stage... Again, I want to wish you the most wonderful birthday ever my dear dear friend...you are loved by so very many people including me...so I sing to you....'Happy Birthday To You, Happy Birthday To You, Happy Birthday Dear Betty, Happy Birthday To You'.
Long May You Wave!
On another front...Here are a couple of plants in my garden down below...What I love about this picture is seeing this very interesting Opuntia in the foreground (a beautiful plant) and in the background is 'the city'...that building that you can just see the top of is The Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel and behind that is that awful iPod Ad on the side of the old Bekins Storage building. There are a number of plants in this photograph besides the Opuntia...just behind it is a Euphorbia Ingens, and almost out of sight on the far left is just one arm of a Euphorbia Amak Verigated...and on the far right side is another tall green Ingens with another Euphorbia person in the right hand corner that is quite different than any of the other Euphorbia's that I have or that I have shown you in the past.This is that same plant in a different part of the garden when it was in full bloom...this is a gorgeous lush plant when it is blossoming...it pretty much looks like nothing much at all when it is not blooming, but oh my dears, it is breathtaking when you see it as it was in this picture. This was taken with my no-think analog camera quite a few years ago.
This next photograph is of an Opuntia that was developed by Luther Burbank. It's claim to fame, besides being very beautiful, is that it is practically spineless, so it can't "get you" the way so very many Cactus type plants can and often do. All the pads on this plant are an almost perfect round shape... This little guy is the beginning of a new pad just starting to grow. We planted this across the street because we had done a major 'haircut' on the mother plant and we had these lovely extra pads. It is now a very good size plant and this is just an extreme close-up of one of the existing mature pads with a new little baby beginning it's journey...So very dear, isn't it? You can see the places where the spines would be, can't you? And there is almost nothing there that can draw blood, believe me.
I'm sure that a lot of you are familiar with Hens & Chicks...this particular example of this commonly named plant is quite small but oh soooo very beautiful. Talk about perfect symmetry.Each of these little clusters are no bigger than a silver dollor, just to give you an idea of what you are looking at here in the above photograph. I love that little bit of dark brown on the end of each of the leaves...
More to come....
***UPDATE: Sunday, 10:10 a.m.
Still, More To Come....
Name: OldOldLady Of The Hills
Location: Los Angeles, California