Skip to main content

Watch me bloom

Bougainvillea are getting their time in the sun! I always thought that the humble bougainvillea must definitely have been the step child of the flower God. I mean, to be stuck with a name like THAT! It's okay for a French Navy Admiral to be called 'Louis Antoine De Bouganville' but the narcissist named a flower after himself, what had the poor thing ever done to him?
So, now you have the bougainvillea, a humble little flowering plant.  Just an average plain jane, even the petals aren't pretty, they aren't even called petals. The faux petals are actually 'bracts' and they look like coloured leaves more than petals. Miss plain Jane isn’t as talented as her pretty cousin the rose, you see it doesn't smell sweet either. I mean imagine Shakespeare saying… 'What's in a name.. a bougainvillea will never smell sweet even if it were called a rose."
And so, I was surprised to see the celebration of Bougainvillea recently. To begin with, an entire country got named after it. You don’t see another country, or even a state called Rose, or Jasmine or even Poppy or Pansy, but Bougainvillea , a small cluster of islands and atolls which were previously part of Papua New Guinea, have overwhelmingly voted to be an autonomous nation as of December 11, 2019.Bougainvillea will soon be a stamp on your passport, while rose will still be a type of wine in your liquor cabin.
At a recent beach side wedding, I saw the bride wear a tiara of bougainvillea, and I was surprised. Wasn’t that pride of place reserved for ‘proper flowers’ like carnations, or chrysanthemums? Even the table center pieces were bouganvilleas.
That flower, that was not even a flower, was being celebrated, and it filled my heart with joy. (The actual bouganvillea flower is the small , white , inconspicuous within the colourful leaves masquerading as petals.)
Now, for years, and by years I mean decades, I have been a big fan of bougainvillaea’s’, this is infact the third article I am writing in celebration of this plant.
You see, the bougainvillea, is like your typical 'adjusting / compromising' woman, doesn't mind it if she is made to grow on the dividers of national highways, amongst dust and grime and the whizzing cars. She is always part of the flowering hedge surrounding the garden and never part of the actual 'garden' itself. You'll never see a boy gift a girl a bouquet of bougainvillea. The only time a bougainvillea features in a hindi movie is when, sometimes during a song sequence the hero tucks in a single bougainvillea in the heroines hair. Why? Because all the other flowers in the garden have huge boards which read 'DO NOT PLUCK'.
When all the other pretty flowers wilt and wither away from the hot summer sun, our hardy little ‘Miss No- Fuss’ comes to our rescue once again , with her profusion of colours. Bouganvillea was always the back-up flower, the ‘best supporting flower’ award and never the ‘heroine flower’ award. And yet, times have changed.
There was a time when posh cafes used to have faux flower walls, made of blooming roses and azaleas, but this weekend I saw an upmarket restaurant celebrate a faux flower wall covered in bougainvillea, they went one ahead and even did a faux ceiling with bougainvillea creepers.
Times are changing. The journey of the Bougainvillea from the dusty road side divider, to the pride of place in a wedding celebration, makes me believe that you can be whoever you want to be, you can achieve the brightest and most glorious future for yourself. That good, sturdy, hardy people can succeed in marvellous ways, by just continuing to be the best version of themselves , just like the Bougainvillea. Don’t let history define your future, just because it has not happened till date, does not mean it cannot happen in the future; believe in your brilliance!
Bougainvillea make me believe that ‘ Apna time Ayega ‘ applies to people as well as flowers.


Popular posts from this blog

birthday retrospect : Lebensmude and other Midlife things

This year will be the 11 th Birthday retrospect;it is a promise I keep to myself, where I write my thoughts on growing a year older. I started writing a birthday retrospect on my 25th birthday and this year being my 35th birthday post. (read last years post  BR 2018 )
This year went by in a blur –and I was happy about it. Earlier, my reaction used to be, “ Oh my God! This week went by so fast, where did the time go?” , but this year I couldn’t wait for the months to roll by. I was in a WHY IS LIFE TAKING SO MUCH TIME TO PASS BY mode . Ah! I can feel that a lot of people reading this are going to be surprised by this. Because I have always been someone plugging my day with many things to do, I was someone who was a ‘go getter’ kind of person, so much to do in life, so much to see in life, the girl with the biggest FOMO or Fear of missing out. This year I had flipped completely to the opposite spectrum. I didn’t want to do anything new. It wasn’t like I was demeaning the act of disco…

7 things I wish I could tell my medical student self, 15 years ago

Two things happened this morning , one was the NEET (the national entrance exam of medicine) results in the Newspaper, and the second ,a discussion on our college whatsapp group that today was infact 15 years to the day we attended our first lecture as Medical students. The jubiliation of the students and parents of today as they embark on a new journey in medicine, and my own journey of the past 15 years ; the connection was like a resonance that my writing muse could not deny. What would I tell the medical student , that was me, from 15 years back? What secrets of the trade, what insider scoop could I share which would have made my journey a little less daunting, a little more fun, and may be even more satisfying? Here are my thoughts in no particular order, except as they enter my head.
1.You made it! : I think the first thing I would like my younger self to do is to celebrate , and not doubt myself. I had won. I was in. the door had closed (atleast to the medical college of choi…