We were recently invited to a lunch party to celebrate the bloom of poppies that pop up between the cracks in Gaby’s garden patio.
This annual event began ten years ago when she sowed seeds and planted a few poppies in her peripheral planter beds, with minimal success confirming her claim of being a terrible gardener. The next spring the peripheral beds saw even fewer poppies, but the spaces between the concrete slabs of her patio sprouted a beautiful awe-inspiring bloom. Over the years the poppies spread to the front garden and onto neighbors' yards carried by the wind, birds, and an occasional hand-delivered gift of a dried seedpod.
The Poppies- A changing constellation of poppy varieties, depending on the ever-changing seasonal conditions, or whichever cross pollinating a seed was moved to enact: orange, red, pink, large, small, Hungarian, California poppies… Indeed a reason to celebrate!
The Feast- A no-stress assemblage of what’s in one’s garden or fridge at the time, what one feels inspired to make or bake on that day, or simply a bouquet of sweet peas that volunteer themselves annually along one’s back fence - always celebratory and always just right. Our celebration included: garden salad with calendula flower petals and mint, cheese, truffle paté, home-smoked salmon, fresh strawberries, moist almond cake, fresh sourdough bread, and Kombucha from the large mason jar on Gaby’s kitchen counter.
The Guests- An ad-hoc gathering of those who are in town or are willing to travel on short notice, have an open lunch hour or willing to open it, and are compelled to gather and talk about their latest projects, families, joys and tragedies, or simply about Gaby’s Spring garden. The invite is sent much like the short notice call to the annual international surf competition at Maverick's in Moss Beach, CA… “come now if you can”.
This annual event sprouts new ideas, friendships, recipes, and gardening tips from within the confines of our daily lives in bright and unpredictable ways.