Three years ago today, I arrived in Amsterdam. I was jetlagged and foggy in the head, but still remember the lift I got from the mounds of tulips blooming in a nearby park.
Amsterdam. April 28, 2017.
Such exuberant flowers, unruly in their passionate display. We should all live so boldly.
A few minutes ago I was working in my front yard, sowing death and destruction via my homemade weed killer (white vinegar, salt, and dish soap), while feeling frustrated and worn out by neverending garden demands. I was dreaming of a full-time gardener. Or better yet, a tiny house and one pot of geraniums. Or maybe a barrel of gasoline and a match to make it all go away.
Then I hit PAUSE on my grumpiness and focused on some blooming tulips.
It really is a wonderful thing to survive a long, dark, cold, snowy winter and be rewarded with colorful flowers. I’m still dreaming of my own gardener, but in the meantime I’m gonna try to appreciate the beauty poking through the tangled, weedy mess that is my front yard.
This is what was happening in my front yard nearly a year ago today.
There needs to be some serious growth taking place in the next two days if the tulip wants to debut on the same day this year.
Spoiler alert: I don’t think it’s gonna happen.
Despite already feeling overwhelmed by my gardening responsibilities, I brought 10 tulip bulbs back from Amsterdam. I wanted to have a yearly floral reminder of our trip. Today, I went outside and figured out where I could wedge them in. I prepared the soil and used my handy-dandy tulip-bulb-digger-thingy to make a hole. I set one bulb in the hole and then thought, “It’s been a while since you planted a tulip bulb, maybe you should check for any special instructions.”
Good thing I checked with the interwebs. Tulip bulbs are only supposed to be planted in the fall. Doh!
Amsterdam tulips nearing the end of their bloom.
My bulbs are now tucked away in a paper bag in a basement cabinet. They’ll stay there until September when my phone calendar alert reminds me that it’s really and truly tulip planting time.
We’ve got tulips:
Floating in the Museumplein pool.
Growing in a mound as Tracy stands guard over them in a tiny park.
We’ve got a canal view complete with narrow buildings and houseboats:
We’ve got a bicycle built for three, complete with windshield for the tiniest rider:
And last but not least, we’ve got Stroopwafels:
Gift from Femke, our AirBnB host.
Good thing I documented them here, because these delicious morsels are going fast!
Today’s post is brought to you by people who no longer live here. The first tulip was planted by former neighbors, but not when we were gardening side-by-side. Rather, they did one of their infamous “drive-by plantings” when we weren’t looking, and gifted us some miniature tulips.
The next tulip is a senior citizen and was planted by the former owners of our house. Next month, we’ll have lived here 20 years.
That red flower is a lesson in being beautifully tenacious.