Thursday, September 8, 2011

Cotton Candy

After 48 hours of deep thought, I decided to send flowers to someone.

Sending flowers had been the initial, instinctive plan - until I saw how much the full and decent-looking arrangements cost. In this age of austerity, it seemed like a tasteful, top-of-the-Hallmark-line greeting card would do just as well. But even though we’ve been out of meaningful touch for years, and I suspect they now belong to the Tea Party, this person and her husband once spent a week driving me around New England to visit colleges, dropping hundreds of dollars on sweatshirts and water bottles at campus bookstores. (Not to mention footing the bills for those evenings out at the Olive Garden.)

I don’t usually send people flowers. I send baskets filled with snack foods, because that’s what I’d want people to send to me. But they don’t. They send me flowers in vases that are out of harmony with my rental d├ęcor. I’ve put the vases to work in other ways, reusing them as oversized candy dishes or storage bins for the salt, pepper, and sugar packets I unload from low-end eateries. There’s one vase I use as a pail to collect the stream of water that occasionally leaks from my bathroom ceiling.

Sending food wasn’t a sensitive option this time around.

I ordered over the phone. A few seconds into the call I made a promise to myself that, from here on out, I will only buy special deliveries directly online.

“What a beautiful choice!!!! Is it for a young girl?!”

“No, it’s for a really old woman,” I said.

“Oh.” The enthusiasm evaporated and we segued right into the billing-information portion of the conversation. We both so desperately wanted to get off the phone that I forgot to ask for the card message to be read back to me. There’s no telling how many typos will turn up in that small space.

This is a Get Well situation. I needed an arrangement that would strengthen the recipient on sight, wowing her into recovery. If it’s possible for any non-edible special delivery to do so, it’s this long-stemmed, “sweet as cotton candy” bouquet (tightly packed into a vase big enough to have some serious pail potential).


  1. Second try for making a comment. I think flowers were the perfect choice. She is very special to you and so are flowers. I can imagine her smile when she receives your bouquet. Hey, she is not "a really old woman." She is a "special woman." When you send me flowers, watch your definition of me when ordering. Just kidding.

  2. Kadzi, I was so touched by this particular blog. The flowers were such a loving gesture. When I was in the hospital for a few days after having a baby, two or three relatives sent me flowers, and it meant so much to me, especially after a painful C-Section. I still have the photographs I took of the flowers. I'm just sure that the flowers you sent were a real pick-me-up for your friend, and the pleasure of them lasted for a significant amount of time.
    By the way, the picture of you with the coffee cup is really cute. I got a kick out of it. I don't recall seeing it before.