Flower Power

My kitchen is in what was the employee break room when my building was the town bank.  It is long and narrow, edged with a long sink on one side and two arch-topped windows with the hot water radiator in between on the other side. You won’t see my kitchen featured on a blog. You may have a hard time telling if it is 1940 or 2015 inside. I feel comfortable in my uncomfortable little kitchen. I paint, sand, glue and fix things here. Everything that is in it is a reject from the shop for its broken, repaired or cracked condition.  But, I’m not done playing with it yet.

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The reason I came in here was not to show you the kitchen. I want my little antique shop enough that any inconveniences are easily over-looked.  Anyway, I want show you these tulips.

I’ve never seen a flower glow like these do and the scent is divine. Did you know  most  fragrant tulips are early blooming  types in the orange and red family?

I have to make a quick run to the post office to mail an eBay package. Come with me. It is close to the shop.

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When I walk to the post office, I usually walk past this building. It used to advertise Gold Medal Flour on the side. One day, I called the corporate office for Gold Medal Flour in Minnesota, asked to be connected to the right department and then asked the representative if General Mills would possibly donate the paint so the town could  repainted the advertisement in a long-lasting oil paint. They said no because “Gold Medal Flour only donates to India.” That is what the woman told me.  I still think about that when I walk past the building.

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This is the next home. The new owners did a fabulous job of keeping its best qualities. It looks so sturdy, doesn’t it?  I imagine that its owners feel safe during storms within its sturdy framework.

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This house is the next house on my errand to the post office. I just turn left and  the  post office is around the bend.

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Everywhere in town the sidewalks wear a layer of flower petals. Have your ever seen anything so pretty? The sign says that animals and people have a refuge on these grounds.

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This little dog run leads to the front gazebo. Walking to the post office is interesting because there are short-cuts, back ways, and alternative paths…and it is only three blocks away.

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My kitchen clock says it is time to get back to work.

I am remembering our uncle this Memorial Day, Capt. Donald August Peuckert, killed at the Battle of Saipan on June 15, 1944, at the age of 18.  Two thousand marines were killed that morning and before it was all over, the total number of people killed (civilians and soldiers on both sides) numbered more than 30,000.

Later, my grandmother received a letter from a friend of Uncle Don’s who was also there. He wrote , “It was such a beautiful, calm day that we would not have guessed that a war was going on.” Only now, when I am decades past the age my grandmother was then, have I learned from reading about that morning and the night before, that his friend wrote these words to comfort my grandmother and that they were not really true. I am glad she never knew truth.  It was hard enough as it was.

Wishing the world peace,

~Ginene

 

33 thoughts on “Flower Power

  1. Welcome back Ginene. Thank you for a lovely walk among interesting buildings and beautiful blossom. When my son Sam was looking for sponsorship for his Atlantic row, I approached the travel luggage firm Samsonite (Samson Knight – geddit?). They said all their sponsorship was taken for the next two years. Since Sam won the race, they rather missed a trick.

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  2. Especially on Memorial Day,it is good to have a face, a real story for those thousands of soldiers who gave their lives. Only 18…such poignant story. Without Canadian and American soldiers, my parents would not have survived the WWII in The Netherlands.I am always very aware of that but even more so on a day like today.
    Thank you for the lovely post and thank you for the walk. It is beautiful. There are quite a few of those colorful houses here and they are called Painted Ladies.
    I covet your sweet little kitchen with so much to see, and the magical glowing tulips…and ohohoh that clock!!
    Love and Peace to you, Ginene, xo Johanna

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    • Thank you for reminding us how many people the American troops helped. I once talked to a man in Paris who told me that seeing the American soldiers marching down the Avenue des Champs-Élysée was one of his best memories. He said an American soldier gave him his first pair of shoes.

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  3. Walking through your kitchen and then past those beautiful old homes was just what I needed this morning to start the day. Thanks for sharing the story about your Uncle Don. All of those little stories, favorite knickknacks and sidewalk detours are what life is really about. Food for thought, and peace.

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  4. Many years ago I lived in a house that had yellow and red tulips in one of the flower beds. The squirrels ate all the red tulips but never touched the yellow. Must have been something about those red tulips that made them tasty!

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  5. What a lovely walk, Ginene, with daintily cute villas and bouquet-like trees lining the road to post office… Truly, there is beauty greeting one in every view and object, with you amidst it all as a magician waving the wand…best wishes.. Raj.

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  6. Your kitchen is charming and yellow tulips are my favorite! For years I only grew yellow and red—such a pretty combo. Now I love a rainbow.

    You live in a picturesque town, just lovely, especially this time of year. Sort of sad about the Gold Medal Flour company–I think your idea to paint the wall was genius!

    The letter your grandmother received from your uncle’s friend, I’m sure that gave her some peace. She was so young, I hope this made her feel some optimism sooner than later.

    Happy Memorial Day, Ginene.

    Jane x

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    • Sadly, her life was never the same. She often said that it always felt like it happened “just yesterday,” though she never harbored one moment of hatred. She said that the Japanese mothers’ suffering was no different than hers.

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  7. I love the photos of your neighborhood. Thanks for the heart warming story of your family. My dad & his 2 brothers were overseas in WWII, but luckily all came home unharmed to live long lives. Wish I lived where you do!

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  8. Hi Ginene, thank you for not only the walk, but the talk, and pointing out the things your have. It looks like an inviting place, and I love those quirky little prints with thermometers in your kitchen. Your Memorial Day story is a sad one, but those times were full of hope for our parents, aunts & uncles, weren’t they? My dad’s story certainly was, as a wounded veteran of WWII, my mother carried on with 3 little ones in tow while my dad lost his leg in a foxhole and was hospitalized for months. The happy ending is that they went on to have 6 more children, and I feel like I can say, as #9, it was an idyllic family life. I know my dad suffered much physical and mental pain over the years, but we are all free to tell his story and many more because of it. Thank you for telling yours. It’s good to hear from you.

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  9. What fun it was to see your kitchen and to tag along on the walk to the post office. Your kitchen is darling. I love it that your building used to be a bank and your kitchen a break room. I enjoyed reading all the comments concerning the American soldiers. Thank you for the reminder of what today is all about. Oh! And I never knew there were tulips that had a nice scent! ~Ann

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    • Yes, Ann, I didn’t know there were scented tulips either. And these tulips don’t cast just a whiff, they fill the room with scent. I searched for their name on-line but I didn’t find them in Google Images.

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  10. Ginene,
    Once again, a lovely picturesque walk through your village. I’ve always thought that the Greatest Generation had such an eloquent way with the language of words. Your uncle’s friend spoke comfort to your grandmother, even as he must have relived that day many times over. I thank your uncle.
    Have a good week!

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    • What most impressed me about that letter is the way the man wanted to lighten the burden my grandmother carried and keep the reality to himself. I would think my grandfather would have known that it did not go down as the bluebird and blue sky day portrayed by Uncle Don’s friend, but grandpa would never have told her. I remember my grandmother telling me that she would not have made it through those days without feeling the comfort “of being held in your grandfather’s strong arms at night.”

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  11. Ginene, what a completely lovely story. The showing of your kitchen had me saying awwww..what a lovely kitchen.. You captured the tulips perfectly. The walk you took us on was one of the most lovely walks.. You are very fortunate to have such beauty all around you to make a simple trip to the post office such a delighful experience.. (soul-soothing). Thank you for taking us with you on your walk. (I’d love to comment on the Gold Metal part – but I’d get to mad – don’t want to lose my moment of joy in your walk) But kudos to you for trying..

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    • Kim…I must say that when I think over my presentation to her about the quintessential American apple pie being made with Gold Medal flour and Gold Medal’s historic advertising within small town America,..it raised my feathers, too!

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  12. I love how you string together the moments of your day! It is a story of joy and purpose twinged with some sadness. Thank you for your family’s sacrifice to protect the freedoms I enjoy today. The pictures invite me into your life and make me want to sit down over a cup of tea (I’m not a coffee drinker) with you to talk some more. (But we’ll keep one eye on the clock because there is still work to be done!)

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  13. Your little kitchen is so sweet….. and those tulips are beautiful too!!!!! I can only imagine how fragrant they are :o) Your walk to the post office thru the neighborhood is so charming!!!!
    ~Des

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  14. What a magical kitchen, G. My…I could not come up with such a seat cushion. The neighborhood is lovely..and the blossoms….Cherry Blossoms or Dogwood??!

    I’ve often thought about the ironies in the world. How cruelty and devastation can play out on the other side of idyllic beauty and peace, whether the expanse be an ocean or a city.

    Diana

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    • Hi, I think it is Dogwood, but I’m not certain. You are so right about the irony of beauty and the charm of idyllic settings. Likewise, the country isn’t always the healthiest place either. I couldn’t drink the well water on my little farm, when I had it in Wisconsin, because the well was only 16 feet deep and all the neighboring potato farmers used chemicals like absolute crazy.

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  15. What a sweet kitchen you have, your clock is adorable! Thanks for taking along on your walk to the post office. These homes are gorgeous, so full of history and charm. They sure don’t make them like they used to.

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  16. Hello there Ginene :)

    I’m so happy you left a comment on my blog. I ADORE your kitchen and in fact pinned the first two pictures. I’d love to see more :)

    I’m sorry about your uncle Don. I can’t even imagine the pain his mother went through. I know the friend lied, but I think you’re right about her not knowing the truth.

    The flour… not going there. It makes me too angry. I won’t be buying their product anymore, that’s for sure.

    Love your neck of the woods.

    It’s so nice to “meet” you!
    rue

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  17. I was prompted to visit your blog after reading your comment about the copyright laws on Raj post on his visit to Nan Hau Temple.
    I have fond your posts a joy to look at and read.
    Probably because you notice and appreciate life around you. _/\_

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