For Nicole

Lockwood and I went to Avery Park for the geology, but stayed for the rose garden. I’ll have a full bouquet of roses for you sometime in the nearish future, plus one of the best bee photos I’ve ever taken. But for now, I wanted to share one very meaningful rose.

This is Nicole.

Nicole rose cultivar
A lovely Nicole rose at Avery Park, Corvallis, Oregon.

Actually, this is Nicole. We’ve been friends for nearly a decade now, ever since those halcyon days in the Death thread on the Writer forums. Nicole and I were both aspiring-to-be writers then. Now she’s a full-time freelancer, and one of my inspirations: if she can do this as a single mom with two kids, I have no damned excuses.

Nicole rose
The petals look a bit flamenco, don’t they? I love the way they whirl, and their lovely pink tips. It’s one of the only times I’ve actually thought pink looked quite lovely.

She’s one of the strongest people I know; also, one of the kindest. But she can be fierce. She’s beautiful inside and out. She is, in fact, quite a bit like the rose that bears her name.

Cluster of Nicole roses with autumn trees in background.
I didn’t expect roses to be blooming so vigorously so late in the fall, but it’s fantastic. I love these blooms against the autumn leaves in the background.

And so, this Nicole is for Nicole, with love, from her heart sister.

For Nicole
The Bolingbrook Babbler:  The unbelievable truth is now at

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