Thursday, June 28, 2007

The Night-Blooming Cereus



I have two of these strange little plants, and I was sure the first was going to bloom on Monday night. When it hadn't bloomed by midnight, I figured I was wrong, so I went to bed. When I woke up at six on Tuesday morning, I discovered I had missed the bloom. After the bloom, the blossom closes back up and goes limp.

So--I had one more chance. Another NBC, another blossom ready to bloom. So Tuesday night at about ten-thirty, I took my notepad and pen, my camera, and lit some candles on the back porch. Hubby thought I was crazy (nothing new), but I was determined to sit up with the cereus and add to my pool of life experiences.

By eleven-thirty I was getting a little drowsy and I had watched all the lights go off in my neighbor's houses. (No telling what they thought about me if they looked out their windows and saw me keeping a candle light vigil with a plant and a camera.)

But while I was sitting there, my brain began to spin. I'd run into a problem, you see, with the ending of my book. I knew how I wanted it to end, but I was having a very hard time coming up with a credible scenario that would result in the situation I wanted to create.

So I backed up and took another stab at it, from a new direction. And what do you know, things began to fall into place. I'd tell you more, but we're now entering the "unexpected" part of the plot, and I've learned that it's not fair to give things away to blog readers who have long memories. It spoils the book for them.

And then--wow! Another completely unexpected thought. I sat out on my back porch, in the candlelight, and wrote four pages of notes. I think it's all coming together now.

And the plant was beginning to bloom.

By about one a.m., it had opened enough for me to feel satisfied and ready for bed. So I took a final picture, breathed deep of its fragrance, and put my precious notepad in the house, in case of rain.

And Wednesday morning, I didn't even feel tired. I've attached a couple of pictures--one before bloom and one after. I should have set the flower against a solid background so you could see it better, but if you click on the photo, I think it'll enlarge so you can have a peek.

~~Angie

7 comments:

The Koala Bear Writer said...

Beautiful - and a very interesting plant! Aren't story ideas like that sometimes? Looking forward to seeing it... :)

Accidental Poet said...

VERY cool.

And thanks for keeping the surprise a surprise!!

Marla Taviano said...

Mmm...great story.

You'll be tired tomorrow morning instead. I always suffer from late night adventures the NEXT next morning.

But I'm positive the Facebook will be worth it.

Melissa said...

ok is it me or does the first picture kinda remind you of the plant from "Little Shop of Horrors" ? beautiful flower..but the way it's perched and the angle of the picture it sooo reminds me of the Audrey II. lol..."feed me Seymour,feed me,now!"
maybe it's just ME going crazy

Angela said...

LOL! That's IT, Melissa. For days I've been trying to remember the name of that show, movie. I kept telling my husband that it was like that "Feed me, feed me, Seymour" plant, but he didn't have a clue what I was talking about.

Little shop of horrors--perfect! Yep, that's exactly what it looks like.

But smaller. :-)

Angie

Suzanne said...

Thanks for sharing, I probably never would have heard of that plant if it weren't for you!

Anonymous said...

Hmmmm ... a flower blooms, an idea germinates ... love the symmetry! For what it's worth, I would have stayed up to watch it bloom, also. What an experience! Clyde