May 28th, 2013

flora: coquelicot


When we moved into our apartment, I was thrilled to see all the flamboyant trees on our road. At least I hoped my tree identification skills had not failed me and that they were indeed flamboyants. Then spring came along and all over Cairo, trees started flowering: Jacarandas; pink and red cotton trees; acacias; red bottlebrushes; purple, white, and pink orchid trees.... But not ours. They barely put on any leaves. Still, the good ol' Web said that flamboyants flower in May and June, and I told myself to be patient. But that didn't stop the worry that they wouldn't bloom.

A month ago, I even wrote an entry in a journal about it: Studying the flamboyants for signs that they are going to flower. Strange, but I carry around a knot of stress, of fear, that they won't bloom. I so very much want to see a sea of red from our balcony.

Chiding myself for being silly, I got the binoculars and checked out the treetops. And lo and behold, buds!


Whew. I finally relaxed, and a couple of days later, my impatience was vanquished by the sight of the first flowers:


Then we left for a week to vacation on the Red Sea, and when we got back we had our very own wished-for sea of red awaiting us, just as I had hoped. Another name for flamboyants are flame trees, with good reason:

flamboyant flowers

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