|Ajisai (hydrangea) making its little fist of joy.|
Even after moving to Japan I'd somehow managed to remain indifferent to these flowers, smiling and making the appropriate noises when others pointed them out to me. They were more interesting, but still a bit dumb, I thought while swatting mosquitoes as my companion would gesticulate enthusiastically at the blooms.
But it wasn't until hiking in Daisetsuzan Koen that I fell in love.
|Lace cap hydrangea during a recent mountain hike.|
Now, of course, I can't stop taking their picture. I find them beautiful in all stages, but especially as they fade. There is something particular graceful about those flowers tinged with brown, the color dripping away until the blossoms stand dried on the stems, little treasures to be discovered on a winter hike.