Friday, 15 January 2016
Playing the Asian card
Today is Thai Pongal, which I always confuse with new year because I live in Britain, but which is sort of the equivalent of a thanksgiving or Harvest Festival in the north of Sri Lanka, where my parents are from.
The celebration involves boiling rice collected from the first harvest in milk in a clay pot, allowing the milk to boil over ("pongal"). And the date varies from year to year, but it falls at the start of January ("Thai").
I am a disgrace to the Asian community, because I am rubbish at cooking rice. I often burn it, and I don't even know how that happens! So I'm using today as an excuse to share pumpkins and flowers photos instead.
Thai Pongal is also about celebrating the sun, for giving energy to the harvest. And so here's a British harvest display I did with sunflowers. And more celosia - that must be my go-to flower in autumn!
I had a Twitter conversation this morning with a few flowery people about a certain dahlia that is very popular among florists. It's this one, which I photographed when I went to Withypitts Dahlias.
If you know the flowers I tend to favour, you can see why Cafe au Lait is beautiful, but isn't my favourite dahlia. I prefer the dark drama of Thomas A. Edison below.
This was my parents' registry office wedding in the 1970s. White is associated with widows rather than brides, and so bright colours were the order of the day!
I had no idea when I decided to grow Nicotiana 'Lime Green' from Higgledy seeds some forty years later, that it was a flower that had featured in my parents' wedding. I saw the wedding photos a couple of months after I did this. It looked like a miniature version of the registrar's table flowers, and looking at the two photos made me smile.