Spring like feel to Late Summer

I know.
It just looks like some road side yellow color flowers.

It is.
It is also more than that.

As I take a walk with the boys discussing something utterly foolish….this bright colored flower bush catches my eye.
It adds a spring like feel to late summer.
It also add a spring (pun intended) to my walk.

I observe. Therefore, I am.

Spring Flowers

The more often we see the things around us – even the beautiful and wonderful things – the more they become invisible to us. That is why we often take for granted the beauty of this world: the flowers, the trees, the birds, the clouds – even those we love. Because we see things so often, we see them less and less.
–Joseph B. Wirthlin


Spring Flowers - Ambal Balakrishnan

Wildy Chasing Wildflowers in Texas Hill Country

I look forward to every season (including spring) every year.

Oh Cherry Blossom, Thy bring so much Joy to My Eyes and Heart!
Much Ado About a Dewdrop
Scouting for Pictures in Fall

But, all of Austin’s enthusiasm for spring seemed a bit too much to me.

Even before spring arrived, I started hearing the following “Ambal, you are going to have a field day with your camera this spring in Austin. Are you ready to see bluebonnets?”.

Mid-March was kids spring break. We took a road trip to Dallas.  I saw a lot of beauty…green hills, cows, trees in multi-shades…beautiful.  But, I didn’t see any bluebonnets. So, I didn’t understand why Austin was going all gaga over spring and these flowers called bluebonnets that were going to bloom soon all around Texas.

I had to take another road trip this last weekend. And, OMG!!

All the roadsides were filled with bluebonnets and Indian paintbrushes. Such a gorgeous sight. I couldn’t stop clicking pictures.

As I was taking in all the spring beauty, the following questions started plaguing my analytical mind: How come these flowers are not named purple-bonnets? What would Wordsworth have written about bluebonnets if he had wandered Texas country side instead of chancing on the daffodils near Gowbarrow park?

I tried to quieten my analytical mind and  just be in the moment and soak in the breath-taking beauty of the bluebonnets.

And, that is when the next set questions of popped into my mind: How did the bluebonnets know when to bloom? Who reminded them?

My calendar is plugged in with a zillion reminders. I have at least 3 apps on my phone to manage all my meetings, alarms and other reminders. I even have reminders to “remind me” to nag Kumar, Adi and Ari about things that I had assigned for them to do.

When I took a road trip to Dallas in mid-march, there were no bluebonnets on the roadsides. Within a month, they had bloomed in full force around Texas.

Now, here is the million dollar question: Who reminded these bluebonnets to grow up and bloom this spring? How does this happen every single year? Year after Year. Like clockwork.

I am amazed at all that scientists do to find intelligent life in this universe.

Have you read about the recent findings from Curiosity Rover? It is mind blowing.

Yet, the bluebonnets leave me wondering.

Perhaps, we are searching in all the wrong places.

Perhaps, intelligent life exists right where we are.

In the form of fragile bluebonnets that know how and when to bloom to herald the arrival of spring.

No calendar on their computers. No apps on their phones. Nobody to remind or nag them.

They just bloom. At the right time. To take my breath away.

I stand here ,in front of these bluebonnets, in utter awe and wonder.

Happy Spring!

Signed off by,

Less intelligent form of life on this planet aka Ambal


2 Jasmine Flowers from My Backyard

I had some of the best middle school English teachers. They didn’t just teach me. They imparted love for the language and poetry. I also grew up with a great love for Tamil poetry.

I plucked these 2 fragrant jasmine flowers from the backyard. These flowers remind me of a beautiful poem from Poet Valli.

Here is part of the poem transliterated in English:

Kadavul thandha iru malargal kanmalarndha pon malargal
Onru paavai koondhalilae onru paadhai oaraththilae

Alaiyil midhandha malar kandu adhanmael karunai manam kondu
Thalaiyil iraivan soodikkondaan thaanae adhanai saerththukkondaan
Kuzhalil soodiya oru malarum koayil saerndha oru malarum
Irandum vaazhvil perumai perum idhayam engum amaidhi perum

Here is part of the poem in Tamil with English translation:

கடவுள் தந்த இரு மலர்கள் கண் மலர்ந்த பொண் மலர்கள்
ஒன்று பாவை கூந்தலிலே ஒன்று பாதை ஓரத்திலே
Two precious flowers given by God;
One fortunate enough to adorn a charming girl while other floated by placid water.
அலையில் மிதந்த மலர் கண்டு அதன்மேல் கருனை மனம் கொண்டு
தலையில் இறைவன் சூடிக்கொண்டான் தானே அதனை சேர்த்துக்கொண்டான்
Seeing the plight of the floating flower, the Creator with grace adorned Himself with that.
குழலில் சூடிய ஒரு மலரும் கோயில் சேர்ந்த ஒரு மலரும்
இரண்டும் வாழ்வில் பெருமை பெறும் இதயம் எங்கும் அமைதி பெறும்
Both the flowers get their glory by adorning;
So will the heart get filled with peace (for everyone)

English Translation was provided by my friend Daisy whose love for Tamil exceeds mine by many fold.