Monday, May 07, 2012

Rudy and his amazing rhododendrons and azaleas

There has been no adjustment to this photo. No saturation of colors, no umping the volume to create a surreal image. No little blurring along the edges. Plain, raw, straight from my phone. The azaleas and rhododendrons are going full throttle, screaming their colors at you for good or for bad. I saw a dull cream rhodie the other day and said out loud, "But why?" Why have that drab of a color when the family has so many outlandish, garish, shocking and startling of colors?

Rudy has fantastic color in his garden right now. I realize I haven't given you an update lately on Rudy—you can read previous posts like this one, or this one. In the glorious sunshine this afternoon, I stood with Rudy in his back yard admiring the spring color. He can't get to pruning his shrubs anymore, but they are in amazing shape.

We had to do the math to figure out how old he was and we realized, together, he's 98 now. "All of my friends have passed on," he told me.

Despite his hearing aid not quite working well enough to hear me, we chatted about a variety of things like composting, a tree removal down the block, and how he doesn't think he'll be around for another winter. It's hard to hear someone tell you that. What can you say? I don't think it matters what I say, but to just be there to listen.

So while Diego explored around Rudy's back yard, we two friends stood together, in the sunshine, admiring spring flowers and making small talk. Sometimes it's the smallest things in daily life that bring the most joy.


Anonymous said...

What a beautiful story.
Hope to meet this lovely man when we visit this summer.
Love, Mom

Lacy said...

yes. to. all. of. this.

Heather said...

I can't imagine not believing that I'd live to see another spring. I hope he's wrong. What gorgeous blooms!

Cheryl (Desert Diva) said...

Rudy seems like an amazing guy. He's lucky to have a neighbor and friend like you! :-)

Heather said...

What gorgeous flowers - I echo the other Heather - I hope he gets to see them for another spring!

Nancy aka Wacky Mommy said...

tell him the internets love his yard! those rhodies don't need pruning, they're just perfect. kind of love when stuff doesn't get pruned and gets to go wild a little. "where the wild things are" sigh.

we saw some nice off-white rhodies the other day, next to some hot pink ones. good contrast. so they're alright for that, i suppose.

(ps i love that your mom leaves a comment marked "anonymous.)

ricki 'sprig to twig' said...

All of his old friends may have moved on, but he obviously has found a new friend in you...and, by extension, in all of us.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this Rudy update! I have wondered many times how he is doing. So glad to hear he is still regaling you with stories and blooms.
Lee Ann