In this case, it was a picture of lilacs. Not really any lilacs in particular in any special place, just a vase filled with lilacs. Lilacs used to always make me think of my original home in Parma, Ohio, where we had several lilac bushes in the backyard. My friend Megan (a fellow lilac-lover) and I would sit back in the lilacs and dream of someday-weddings dripping with purple. Lilacs very quickly became my most favorite flower.
In New York, lilac season is brief but beautiful. There is a Lilac Walk in Central Park that is just divine when it's all in bloom, but even if you never make it into the park, you can't miss lilac season because they take over all the flower stands outside the bodegas on the street corners. You smell them as you pass by, a welcome floral fragrance on an otherwise typically smelly street. Their happy, perfect little purple blooms just signal the coming of summer and for me, always put a smile on my face. When I would see the first lilac bunches on those flower stands I would get so happy, and Eric would bring some home for me regularly as long as they were available. Our apartment smelled heavenly.
We don't have lilacs in Florida. We have gardenias, which are also intoxicatingly fragrant and my second-favorite flower, but no lilacs. And I miss them. I forgot how much I missed them until I saw that photo, and then I just couldn't get the image of them in street-side flower stands out of my mind: those happy little purple flowers, a little taste of my childhood, right there in the middle of the noisy, crowded, smelly city that I adored. I love that image.
I realize I haven't updated you much on how things are going with our transition lately. I promise to get a post in that regard up in the coming weeks, after we return from our trip. We're about to really kick-start the Teach For America chapter of our adventure and it's all very exciting; it's what we've been waiting and working for. I will definitely share more soon.
In the meantime, however, we leave today to kick off our midwestern road trip. I will put New York out of my mind as I explore new (to me) parts of the country with my most favorite people. There will be time for homesickness later.
I do have a few posts scheduled to go up during our absence - just a few more things I've been meaning to share with you but haven't quite gotten to yet. (So it won't even feel like we're gone, aren't you excited?!) And when we get back I'll have lots to share about our trip and the next phase of our journey.
So, onward. New adventures in travel and in life.
But I do miss those lilacs.
Lilacs in our New York City apartment, 2009