Lisa may have left her heart in Buffalo, but I left my umbrella, a perpetual calendar (newly purchased, no less), and a sweater I'd spent all summer looking for (and had worn only once). I suppose I have no one to blame but myself, but a person's brain can only hold so much in it at one time before it starts spilling out whenever and wherever it pleases. I don't have any control over the part that spills out either, or else I'd nudge bad memories and useless information on their way.
It all started with the lovely meal we had on the second floor of the Twentieth Century Club. The previous night, we'd had our Buffa10 reception in the lovely gardens there...
...and the next night, we were on the second floor in the elegant whatever-that-room-was-called.
It had rained that day and I took my umbrella along, just in case I needed it when we left to walk back to the hotel. Turns out we didn't. Turns out I forgot I'd even taken my umbrella along.
I'd also taken my new white sweater along because with rain and darkness usually comes cooler temperatures. When we left the 20th Century Club, I miraculously remembered to take my white sweater with me and tied it around the handle of my purse.
The Soil Sisters worked on film footage for a music video as we made our way down Chippewa Street, otherwise known as "The Chip Strip." Anneliese Valdes, from CobraHead, was the videographer and she filmed us as we giggled and laughed our way back to the hotel. We had a great time and I'll never forget as we jumped together, hand-in-hand, off the trolley platform.
The next day, one of our stops as we toured gardens around the Buffalo area was the Lockwoods Greenhouses and Garden Center in Hamburg. There were lots of wonderful goodies to be had, and though we were to eat lunch outside there, I first headed to the plants, because they were calling my name and I couldn't resist. It was a siren song.
A coneflower for everyone at Lockwoods Greenhouses
I bought three plants - a Tricyrtis, a Vernonia, and a Tatting Fern. And a cute cat business card holder. And a garden sign that says, "I must have flowers, always, always," (which is why I was plant shopping while everyone else was eating). And a vintage botanical print clipboard. And a vintage botanical print perpetual calendar that matches the clipboard to hang in my potting shed. And a scallop edged flower pot. That's all.
I stowed my purchases in the back of the bus, behind the seats where we were sitting. When we got back to the hotel, I gathered them up and went to our room. After a little rest, we went back out to dinner, then back to the hotel again.
The hotel room was getting kind of out of hand by this point, so I decided to get things ready for when we'd leave and I consolidated some packages for easy transport. But something was missing. The calendar. I looked high and low and it was nowhere to be found. I'd remembered propping it up against the inside wall of the bus, but I didn't remember retrieving it from its spot. I'd carried it by its fine wire handle and knew I hadn't carried that to the hotel room. It was still on the bus. Wherever that was by now.
By this time, Anneliese had uploaded the videos she'd made and sent them to us by e-mail. Tired and already cranky because of the calendar incident, I sat on the edge of the bed to watch the videos. They were looking pretty good until I came to this one:
You don't have to watch for long to see why I woke right up and was horrified. My new sweater. Or rather, the one I used to own. So, coupled with the discovery of the calendar being left on the bus just half an hour before, and the sweater I'd searched most of the summer for being lost forever, I proceeded to whine around and mutter angrily to whomever would listen (sorry, Mom). My little tantrum was soon over and once again, the hunt was on for The Sweater.
But in spite of it all, things could be worse, of course. Earlier that evening, those of us that were staying through Monday went to dinner at Mother's to show our appreciation in some small way to Elizabeth and Jim for all they'd done. I drove to the restaurant, with Mom in the passenger seat and Pam (Digging) and Diana (Sharing Nature's Garden) in the back seat.
I had the green light and as I slowed to make a left turn, at the last second, I noticed a speeding car coming from that direction and slammed on the brakes as the car zoomed through the intersection, running the red light. Just a second away from what would likely have been a fatality - mine and perhaps others - things get put into perspective real quickly.
The day wasn't so bad after all.