Posted October 8, 2009on:
almost 3 years ago, on my way to Berkeley Bowl one day, I noticed a single plant growing by the roadside infront of this automechanic place on Shattuck. It had beautiful blue flowers that I found very striking. My first reaction was wanting to pull it out (the whole plant) and take it home for my own. But the good angel sitting on my right shoulder said “what if it belongs to someone? What if someone wants it there to look at everyday?” This plant is so rare, in my 15+ years of living in California, that was the first time I saw it. I went home and did a Google search of “blue flower” but never got the name. I passed by the plant 3 more times that week on my way to the market daily, always wanting to pull it out, or take an image, or do something – but didn’t. Then the following week, some one did a clean sweep and took out all the weeds, grass, flowers, and what not from that tiny patch. My blue flower was gone.
One year later, I arrived in York, this godforsaken corner of the world, and lo, what did I see? Everywhere, these blue flowers bloomed. They take place of California Poppies, which, in California, you just blink and you’d catch a few more around the corner. These blue flowers bloomed all summer long, mixed in with the grass and weeds of the patch across my apartment the first year I lived here. They continued to bloom in spring, and this summer, and now, into fall.
Today is a sunny, breezy, cool day. A Bay Area day. I walked May to Son’s work place so he could say hi to her. Then got her to nap in the baby carrier on the way back and I just kept on walking, to feel like I’m back in the Bay Area, and if I just do 10 more blocks, Berkeley Bowl will be around the corner. I saw that blue flower again, on the sidewalk, still beautiful but no longer rare and mysterious to me. It has come to symbolize my exile. Everytime I see it, I’d chuckle at the irony. Then it hit me. Out of nowhere, I knew what it is. Cornflower blue . That’s what they mean on the color wheel.
I went home and did a google image search. Yup. That’s it.