"We Were Here"

Yesterday, I was talking with my neighbor and she asked if we would be staying here another year. It must have seemed strange to her that recently my husband and I were out planting flowers, just weeks before we're set to move. And we weren't planting annuals, but perennials. But it wasn't strange to us. First of all, I love to work in the yard, but that's not really why we were planting perennials. Excluding the apartments we've lived in during our military marriage (because there was no yard), we've lived in seven houses. I've planted perennials of various sorts in the yards of all but one of those houses.

I remember driving through Georgia several years ago and taking a detour through the old neighborhood just to look at the azalea bushes we had planted long ago. They were still there, and were in full bloom. I couldn't believe how much they had grown. Planting something permanent where we live is just one way to leave our mark on the many places we've called home. It's the modern-day military version of scrawling, "Andi was here" on a textbook, or bathroom stall (not that I would know anything about that, mom).

If we ever make our way back here again, I hope to see some large, healthy Rhododendrons in full bloom. And I'll look at my husband and say, "remember years ago when we planted those Rhododendrons?" And if we ever make our way back to Kansas (the one place where I didn't plant a perennial), I wonder if the tenants would find it strange if I pulled into the driveway with a trunk full of plants and did a little gardening?

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