When I left for the weekend Friday morning, I looked in vain for any sign of the hurricane lilies that pop up near the front of my yard every year. Not a hint. I was afraid that another very dry summer had shut them down. But this noon when I returned from a weekend on Galveston Island, there they were, three or four full blooms, and quite a few more stalks at various stages. According to a Q&A piece in this morning’s Houston Chronicle, mine are probably Lycoris radiata, also known as naked ladies because the foliage only appears after the blooms fade. They’re late this year; they usually bloom in early to mid September, at the peak of the Texas Gulf Coast hurricane season. According to our local weather reporters, our section of the Gulf Coast has been struck by post-September hurricanes only three times in the last hundred and fifty years. The last one was a smallish storm called Jerry, which passed directly over my house in October 1985, the only time I’ve ever walked out my front door into the eye of a hurricane.
I spent the weekend on Galveston Island with friends from the Houston Bay Area chapter of RWA, talking about writing. There was some actual writing involved, and quite a bit of wine. Also some football games on the big TV in the living room, but the two or three dedicated fans were kind enough to leave the sound off. Well, the TV sound was off, but there was quite a lot of yelling, too. Colleen Thompson took this picture of me, and Cheryl Bolen and Leslie Marshman did the organizing. Leslie won our eternal gratitude when she talked Sean at Mario’s Ristorante in Galveston into delivering pizzas, even though we were a bit outside their usual delivery limit.