Friday, February 22, 2008

Orchids in the moonlight

Didn't sleep a wink last night. Full moon came streaming through the windows and glass doors, shadowing the giant night blooming cactus in the garden. Massive lotus-like blossoms, aglow in a stream of silvery moonlight. But no fragrance. Where was that heady perfume coming from? Were the hoyas sending a message? The citrus orchard? A calling card from the pomelo or pink grapefruit, maybe. Did the scented white stephanotis suddenly wake the climbing frangipani vine? Perhaps.

No. It's coming from the orchid igloo. But why tonight? First rain, monsoonal heat, and now, a moon like day illuminating the orchids. Laelia. Vanda. Dendrobium. Aaah, there you are! Stanhopea. Stanhopea inodora. Riotous ice green blossom hung high and dangling down beneath the leafy mother plant. Hidden from the moon but glowing of your own accord. Inodora, the ice green maiden. What heady perfume. Such a brief encounter. Two days - perhaps three – and you will vanish. But what a thrill to meet again like this next year. The lover waits.