Thursday, April 17, 2008

Jacarandas - My Slow Purple Death By Allergy

There were never any purple trees where I grew up.

April in San Miguel means the blooming of hundreds, maybe thousands of jacaranda trees. Town turns into a fantasy land of purple. To me, purple trees are like a Dr. Seuss world come to life. It is a beautiful surreal sight.

Thing is, the past few weeks have been an allergy hell for me. Moving to this dry semi desert area of Mexico 18 years ago meant leaving all of my nasty allergies behind. However, for the last few years I seem to be developing an allergy to the jacarandas.
I walk to my gallery almost every day. It is about two miles each way. I pass under many of these purple beauties and walk across purple carpets of their fallen flowers. It is such a sensory rush. I wish that it did not affect me so much. I really want to love them more.
I felt like I was dying there for a while. My head felt like it would pop. I could not breath. My eyes were red and itchy.
I'm sure that you will be happy to know that this week has been much better.
So, now, I can happily post these two views of town for you to enjoy.
Maybe you don't have jacarandas where you live.


Unknown said...

Hi Frank,
How awful for you to have such severe allergies to such incredibly beautiful trees! What an amazing view of the town... and no snow! It was 71 degrees here today, and for the next 5 days, we are supposed to get snow! Guess I'll just have to stay inside and paint. :-) Take care of yourself - and don't go anywhere without your antihistamines.

Sarah Sedwick Studio said...

What a perfect looking town. You are really lucky! Thanks for sharing.

Elizabeth said...

Was so interested to see pictures of your town.
Obviously jacaranda heaven - or hell - depending on your point of view!
I'd love to see more photos of the town at some point but I know you mostly stick to your paintings - which are wonderful.
Greetings from other jacaranda land.
we have a small one on the roof - but no flowers.

FCP said...

Fabulous photos, thanks for sharing. So sorry about the aversion to the beautiful trees! I don't recall anyone being bothered by such when I was growing up, but now it seems seasonal allergies knock most everyone for a loop!
I love the idea of walking the two miles to the studio--sounds like a wonderful meditation and mental preparation time, perhaps?

Unknown said...

I've never seen a jacaranda tree before. It's magical!Is that the town where you live? Wow! It's the opposite of where I live.

Jack Riddle said...

Frank--thanks for this. Makes me yearn for SMA even more. I've never seen these live as we have never been there in April. But our friends have told us about them. Sorry about the alergies--the price of the beauty maybe...

Barbara Pask said...

Hi Frank, Sorry you're suffering, maybe you'll outgrow it at some point. Purple is my favorite color, I wish they grew around here. Did you move there for the landscape? It's just gorgeous! Barb

Frank Gardner said...

Thanks for the comments everybody!

Joanne, not much snow around here. I tried some antihistamines, but they were not working so I gave up.

S.M. Thanks for the comment and for introducing yourself. I had not seen your blog before. I'll stop back to check it out when I have some more time.

Elizabeth, Thanks. I have been thinking that I had not posted many pictures of town. I have not painted many street scenes since I started my blog either. You are right about me trying to stick to art on this blog. Maybe I should start another about Mexico?

Hi Faye. They did not used to bother me. Maybe because I have been walking through them so much this year they really hit me.
The walk is good for meditation, relaxing, thinking, and the old ticker to say nothing of trying to keep my belly in check. LOL

Eric, it is pretty different from N.S.
Yes, that is San Miguel. That big church is in the main square. There are a lot of churches in San Miguel.

Hi Jack. You should visit in April sometime Jack. Yes, the price of beauty and sunshine and 80 degree weather. ahhhh.

Hi Barb. I did not come here for the landscape, but that, along with all the other painting subjects is one of the things that kept me here.

Stacey Peterson said...

Beautiful pictures!! They made me wish spring would come sooner here in the mountains.

Too bad about the allergies. I've been sniffling and sneezing all week too, but I'm not sure what I'm allergic to, since all I can see outside is snow!!

Jennifer Thermes said...

Hi Frank-- My sympathy to you! We're just at the start of that season up here. Beautiful trees and town, though...

Frank Gardner said...

Thanks Stacey. Spring shows up pretty early around here.

Thanks Jennifer. Hey, I didn't know you were so good at Spanish. I read your comment over on Alicia's blog.
I'm trying to write more in Spanish cause I am a real bad speller. Learned by speaking not reading or writing. Need to learn to spell right before my daughter does. Que verguenza.

Christine Mercer-Vernon said...

love the title...nothing worse than having allergies to something beautiful. amazing pictures. i didn't realize how big your town was, and all those jacarandas with that vivid purple flower all over the town, just stunning, it's a shame it causes you such misery.

Frank Gardner said...

Town is pretty big Christine, about 100,000.
It has really grown lately. Still a beautiful place though.
The misery is over now too.

r. chunn said...

Your photos of San Miguel triggered a flood of memories. I spent about two years there taking in the beautiful sights and avoiding the dog droppings. If it's any consolation, I had the same experience with the jacaranda trees. Great to look at, but they gave me sneezing fits.

Jennifer Thermes said...

Hola Frank- Pues, gracias! Me gusta mucho los idiomas. Y español es un lenguaje muy bella y útil tambien. Es bueno que puedes hablar. A veces me ponga timida cuando debo abrir la boca. (oh well... es así en íngles tambien!) ;-)

Mary Sheehan Winn said...

That's a bummer. I have to avoid antihistamines because they make me air headed or some odd feeling that I don't like.
What a beautiful place that is and the Jacarandas are exquisite!

Frank Gardner said...

Hi Robert. I've had some sneezing, but mostly just stuffed head and runny eyes.
Thanks for checking in on my blog.

Frank Gardner said...

I'm with you Mary, the antihistamines just don't do it for me.

Dan said...

What a bummer to be allergic to such a beautiful tree! There are tones of these trees in Southern Spain where I live as well. Last night I saw a city crew out spaying the Jacaranda´s with something. I think they are trying to prevent the little black bugs that were all over the blue blossoms last year.

Frank Gardner said...

Hi Dan. Thanks for the comment and the link to the Blue Jacaranda. They look purple to me, maybe it is all the pollen in my eyes. Does the color vary?
Interesting hobby you have and well done blogs.

Dan said...

The color of the Blue Jacarandas do vary and they do tend to be more towards purple than blue. At least the ones that I have seen. I had a large one in my front yard when I was a kid and a flock of parrots would land in it at about 5:30am each morning making enough screeching noise to raise the dead. Thanks for our comments on my blogs. It is a fun hobby!

Frank Gardner said...

Thanks for the follow up Dan.
Yes, I read that about the birds in your blog. We have to close the windows around 530 or 6 in the morning because the birds get too loud.

Terry said...

I was shocked to hear that SMA is now 100,000 people. I was also shocked to realize that its been 15 years since I was there. How things change.
Loved seeing the Jacarandas (and on Elizabeth's blog too) - we had one in our front yard where I grew up, so it was nice to see them again.

Frank Gardner said...

Hi Terry, estimates on that number vary up and down. That is about right though. It has grown tremndously.
The jacarandas sure are nice. We have one in the yard too.