Monday, April 18, 2011

Patriots' Day

In Boston, and throughout the state of Massachusetts, we celebrate Patriots' Day.  A state holiday (and NOT a bank holiday) where politicians are somewhat forced to make a appearances at drawn-out ceremonies while a good number of folks genuinely have the day off.  It's also the day that more people from around the globe ignore our turnpike, subway system, and bus network and instead opt to actually run the twenty-six-point-whatever foolish miles into Boston.

We have several types of ivy, one of which is Parthenocissus tricuspidata, called Boston Ivy.  Unlike English Ivy, it's deciduous.  It explodes into enormous deep glossy green leaves sometime after the bright red buds appear.  Today, they appeared.

The roof-garden strawberries have also returned, along with several of the other plants.  The magnolia in the back courtyard stays white for about 10-14 days before its leaves come in for the summer.

The Boston Common took down the ice rink and filled the frog pond.  Soon, it will become the happiest disease incubator of giddy splashing children once the fountain is on.  The city is perfumed today with pleasant blossoms.

At the street, gardens are prepared for the season of tourists and the unforgivingly particular eyes of matriarchal organizations dedicated to botanical beautification.  Out of the front door onto petal-strewn bricks, my pasty ankle cowers under orange pants, not plants (Brooks Brothers: clearance $20), and LL Bean driving mocs.

Roof garden plants yawn and groggily wake up after the long freeze, a citrus tree is moved outdoors, and a roof-deck railing post is fitted out with a line spliced onto a cleat where Jr. can practice the turns and tucks of a sailor.  As the breeze freshens and smells of sea, this becomes a serious routine.


Unlike most, I love tourists.  They are excellent for the economy, and I am heartened to see parents and families of all strata deciding that a walk around a city is preferred to a day at an amusement park or something equally dulling and forgettable.  Granted, there are enclaves which should remain out of sight, and Grandfather's nastiest insult is still "leaf-peeper", deployed towards maddeningly slow driving/walking sightseers who interfere with his maddeningly slow driving/walking.  In Boston, if your house is picturesque, it is always the back-drop for tourist photos, and if you have a particularly pained over garden or expanse of ivy with direct sunlight, young couples will stage their wedding announcement photos in front of your house.  A sender of these announcements would be well-served to carefully examine the windows in each picture before releasing the photo to friends and family.


  1. Enjoy the marathon and Patriots' Day! That's hilarious about the engagement photos - yeah, a homeowner could have a lot of fun with that one. :)

  2. What aGREAT bunch of photos, and a BEAUTIFUL post!!!!!!! Love all photos, but the vignette avec flag is special. :)


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