Perhaps an internet troll who critiqued my most recent letter-to-the-editor was correct when he suggested that I must have way too much time on my hands given the things I worry about (the particular topic, the dignity of Native Americans). I rejected the notion until I realized what I had running around in my brain while driving home this afternoon from a visit to Rochester’s Lilac Festival. I was thinking about the things I have in common with the many lilac trees gracing the hilly park located in the southern portion of the town of my birth:
First, the lilac trees and I not only have deep roots in the Flour/Flower City, we both started our lives adjacent to Highland Avenue – the trees in Highland Park, my twin brother David and I down the road at Highland Hospital.
Second, we both hang out at an Olmsted-designed park. I walk and/or bicycle daily through South Buffalo’s Cazenovia Park. They spend all 24/7, twelve months of the year in the aforementioned Olmsted gem, Monroe County’s Highland Park.
Third, casual observers checking us out today might have superficially concluded that the lilac blossoms and I were both a bit past our prime. And,
Fourth, just as anyone stopping by this zoning/environmental lawyer’s website might be surprised (perhaps, disappointed) if they expected my blog to always be playing the same old note, a person who thinks a “lilac festival” only offers lilacs would be quite surprised (and, most likely, not disappointed) by the variety of vegetation one’s senses have the opportunity to explore at this annual event.
Paperbark Maple (Western China)
Brozzoni Saucer Magnolia
Katsura Tree (planted 1919, coincidentally, the year my father was born)
With All Due Respect,
P.S. Bonus picture. My daughter, on the right, sitting in the Katsura tree in 2009: