|Camellia sasanqua 'Yule Tide' 5 January 2023
In this 21st century I believe that my religious and political views are private. I avoid discussing them with anybody I know.
This does not stop me from pointing out that the best education I ever received in my life came in the four years I attended St. Edward’s High School. My teachers were Brothers of Holy Cross, the same congregation of Notre Dame University in Indiana.
Coincidentally to this, both my mother and grandmother were devout Roman Catholics. If there is one important and most beautiful statement from the New Testament that they told me about, it was St. Luke’s 22:19- Do this in remembrance of me ( King James version). I have written at length in many blogs how this rules my life, every day.
In Spanish - 'Haced esto en memoria mía."
I was sad this morning remembering her 3d anniversary of her death yesterday. I decided to take my chances so I went to Gardenworks on Lougheed Highway and I was able to find Camellia sasanqua ‘Yuletide’. This camellia flowers around Christmas and it was a favourite of my Rosemary. The last one I gave to my youngest daughter to take care of in January. She did not water it and it died.
I found a very nice specimen with many buds and one flower. I brought it home. When I cut the flower to scan, it two petals fell off. In the scan you will note how I resolved the problem by adding a just printed photograph of Rosemary and me. This portrait was taken by my granddaughter Rebecca on July 31 2020, 4 months before Rosemary died.
To have this camellia at the door and to remember St. Luke’s quote he attributed to Christ is I believe one of the most beautiful reasons for persisting with one’s life.
I am sharing this blog with anybody who might not only emoji it but perhaps even read it. I have written before how the word share has lost its once lovely meaning just like the word visit. In Spanish to share is compartir which literally means to part with. This is in Reference to St. Luke telling us that the words "do this in remembrance of me" is what Christ said when he was cutting the bread loaf in his hands.
I do not have the heart to buy and decorate a Christmas tree. This is something that Rosemary and I shared. I thought of buying a little tree, not decorate it and enjoy its scent. The camellia at the door will nicely suffice.
Most camellias sold in Vancouver are Camellia japonica that originated in Japan. There is another one that is dear to my heart. it is Camellia sinensis which grows in China.
In 1848, the British East India Company sent Robert Fortune on a trip to China's interior, an area forbidden to foreigners. Fortune's mission was to steal the secrets of tea horticulture and manufacturing. There are two stories on how he did this. One that he dressed as a woman and the other as a Chinese potentate. He was then taken in a covered litter. He observed how Camellia sinensis was grown, how its leaves were picked and how they were dried. He was able to smuggle a few plants to Ceylon. The rest is history as Camellia sinensis is where black and green tea come from.
For breakfast in bed (we did it for 25 years) Rosemary opted for decaf while I always had a large mug of tea. I keep at least 10 varieties of loose tea at any time.