Transporting plants can be problematic. The branches bend or break—and pots have a tendency to topple, even when seemingly secured. All things considered, car rides are a rough turn for the botanical type.
So when circumstances suggested the relocation of a mature hibiscus, neither party was particularly pleased—the flower’s feelings, of course, divined by measured presumption. A year before, this particular plant had been nursed back to thriving health from near death and it wouldn’t suit well to kill it now.
The hibiscus rode on the floor before the front passenger seat. Its diverging stems, crowded with serrated oval-shaped leaves and elegant coral-pink flowers, stretched clearly above the glove box to peer out the windshield and side window. The ride began before daylight and the hibiscus looked as happy as could be expected.
Just a few miles south of Fernandina Beach, day began to break. The sun, still shrouded by the gray haze of an east coast morning, started to burn the mist away from the estuary below. And by the time the car glided down the last truss-held span of highway and across the Georgia border, the warmth of the sun felt strong, like the beginning of another sultry day in the sunshine state.
As the car rushed on, over the hard top of I-95, a seemingly unlikely and certainly incongruous site unfolded. The hibiscus bloomed. A new row of flowers emerged—just as they would at the plants home spot on the porch. Perhaps the potted plant is a more resilient traveller than anticipated.
Then, by some auspicious stroke of synchronized providence, Mike Love’s voice began floating through the branches of the blooming hibiscus, singing “Daybreak Over the Ocean,” a cut from the Beach Boys’ first album of new originals in twenty years—an unlikely blooming of their own.
And for a brief moment, even while barreling along the interstate, all of life resonated in pleasant harmony.