Monday, May 18, 2015
He saw me outside, clipping roses. I wanted some to brighten our dinner table that night, and there were just a few ready. Hmm. Maybe I could use the smaller vase...
I kneeled down to start clipping the first, a lonely long stemmed white. "Do you like roses?" my neighbor asked me hesitantly. I straightened up and held the prickly thing, turning my attention toward him. He had been slowly rolling his trash receptacles up the long driveway, and was now resting against one of them.
said I. "I love them, in fact. It's such a nice day today that I thought I would fill a vase or two." He smiled and indicated the roses covering the ground at the edge of his drive.
"Well, my wife doesn't like them very much, so if you want to clip some of these for a vase, please feel free." I looked at him and thought, how very nice! They were such lovely things, always so well kept and weeded, and I had long admired them. Wondered how they could keep them so consistently wonderful looking.
"Really?" I finally asked. "You mean, I can take some?"
"Absolutely you can! Any time you want to, you just bring out your clippers and have at it," he said, smiling. It was just so utterly kind of him. I was touched. Our families had been neighbors for simply years, seeing one another frequently as we drove up to our homes next to each other's. They had loved our three grandchildren and been sad when they moved away. The presence of children adds light to every neighborhood. And now, he was offering me his roses!
"Thank you!" I said, and instantly I took him up on it. Went in and got a yellow pitcher that I kept ready on a table for that very reason. Yellow is just such a creamy, buttery color that I find it hard to resist. Any flower would be at home in it. Out it came with me, and I gently clipped some of my next door neighbor's lovely blooms. Not so many that it would be noticeably bare anywhere. Balanced, as you might say.
"Well, I'll leave you to your clipping then," he said, after a while.
"Ok, goodbye, and thank you again, so much!" I said as he walked through the gate next to his garage. The gate closed, and then click! went its lock, and he was gone.
I went on clipping roses on both sides of our dividing grass, thinking about the flowers that would soon be sharing the same space. It was nice. Their roses were petite, beautifully red and hugging the ground amongst the leaves. Ours were taller, the blooms fatter and fewer, but together they looked as though they had been meant for each other.
I could hear my neighbor puttering and working in his back yard, and thought how nice it might be to maybe make some chocolate chip cookies, to share. To have conversations that are a little longer than usual. To lose our shyness just a bit.
Yes. I think that is what I will do. Chocolate chip cookies are always an ice breaker. Even between neighbors who have lived side-by-side for years.
See you along the way!