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008 : photography : flashback: April 2008

Pink rhododendrons in full bloom, photograph by A.E. Graves

My April 2008 iPhone photo blog archive includes photos from industrial West Oakland as seen from the elevated BART train, scenes from a bar with fun colleagues, images from a road trip to visit my (now) ex's family just beyond the wine country, and images from the garden and around the neighborhood.

If this image was for someone else, someone curious about California life, I would likely pick one of the road trip images of fields beside the highway, or sunlight streaming through oaks that line a curve. My favorites are not necessarily so representative, however. To me, the image that stands out is about spring.

The image I keep returning to is Fuller bloom, not because it is an image of pretty flowers, but because the flowers on this rhododendron only last a few days each year. The buds swell, they start to show hints of rich color, and then BOOM. And then it's over. 'Not quite as fast as a fireworks show, but it feels fast. If you are working long hours on the days in April when it blooms, you miss it. For an entire year. And must wait again, and hope for better timing.

If you are lucky enough to walk past, though, when you are alert and waiting and eager, this plant is a joy. A beautiful thing in a complicated, not-always-beautiful world with too much concrete and traffic in it.

It's a little explosion of joy in color.

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images and original text Copyright © 2008 - 2013 A. E. Graves

(posted January 11, 2013)

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