This is one of my favorite times of year, early summer when the peonies are in bloom. The days feel lazy and warm, but not too hot, and the flowers from the blackberries behind our house scent the air.
Flowers are an integral part of my memories. The sight of peonies evokes summer days spent at my grandparents' summer house in Guilford.
The house in Guilford was one of my favorite places - it had a sense of place all its own. It had interesting nooks and crannies, and in the bedrooms upstairs were petite closets under the eaves that were just the right size for a child to hide in during a game of hide and seek. The screened porch had a fountain that trickled continuously through the summer, and peonies and beebalm bordered the porch. I am sure it is this house that made me decide to be an architect.
When my family sold the house after my grandfather died, my brother and I made a promise to each other to buy the house back someday. Until that day I have my peonies, taken from the house in Guilford and moved to every house I have owned - first to Virginia, then Maryland, Maine, and finally here in Pennsylvania.
When the peonies are in bloom, I think of days spent in Guilford, lying on the prickly grass, watching the sky, and breathing in the scent of the flowers of the meadow behind the house. I think of nights spent in my dormered room, studying the sloping ceiling above my head and watching the sun fade away. The peonies are blooming this week, and they bring me home to my grandmother and Guilford again.