Adriana in Her Garden, with a Killer View of San Francisco in the Background. San Francisco, 03-18-12.
This is my friend and former neighbor, Adriana, in her garden. It has a killer view of San Francisco’s Portola district. You can even see the cross at the top of Mount Davidson. Anyway, a few years back she started growing her own veggies and such. Now her garden has a comfy, welcoming feel to it. And the killer view. She loves it. I love her and I love visiting her. I also love hanging out with Adriana in her garden.
The one thing I love the most about her garden is that I can always see at least one hummingbird while I am there. She has a hummingbird feeder, as well as plants that nourish them.
Adriana and I share a hummingbird history. When we were next-door neighbors in the Sunset region, we shared a small “balcony,” with our kitchen doors facing each other. We used to sit out there and enjoy the sunsets and the fog and the trees in the unkempt backyard. We also enjoyed the hummingbirds.
We each had a feeder stuck to our kitchen window. The woman who lived in my apartment before me for many years, until she passed away, also used to feed them, so they knew where to come for food. The hummingbirds became very well acquainted, even comfortable with her neighbor. Adriana told me how she saw them fly into her neighbor’s kitchen, sometimes even feeding from her hand; they must have missed her after she died.
I will never forget, soon after I moved in, Adriana and I were standing in our balcony, chatting and enjoying the sunset and the trees and such. I was taking it all in, grateful to be living in such a great place that was also real cheap. Suddenly a hummingbird flew straight at me, stopping about a foot away from me, and hovering, examined the new guy.
“Who the fuck are you and are you going to feed me?”
Adriana and I were speechless. And yes, I did have an always full feeder for him or her and for any others who wanted to stop by. I already loved hummingbirds before that brief, yet powerful inquisition. I had a few sightings at San Francisco State University, where I first saw a hummingbird. However, after that moment, that encounter, that exchange on the balcony, I knew hummingbirds were my personal blessing. The fact that the one magic moment happened with Adriana present also told me she would be a great neighbor and great friend, because the hummingbird felt comfortable with her. Indeed, it is still true that she is a great friend.
I am in awe of hummingbirds. They are my whisperers. I know I can always go to Adriana’s home and share some time with Adriana and the hummingbirds, in her garden with a killer view of San Francisco in the background.