Two weeks ago Carolyn Schmidt, my best childhood chum, walked with me around Cheekwood Botanical Garden in Nashville, looking at flowering trees and shrubs. The day would have been perfect even if we hadn’t seen breathtaking Piedmont azaleas blooming in the woodland garden. But we did, and their beauty stopped us on the shady path. It was the flowers that got us–deep pink buds and baby-pink, sweet-scented tubes with delicate stamens emerging from them like curly lashes. Piedmont azalea (Rhododendron canescens) is native to the southeastern USA, including Tennessee. The plants we saw were about 4 feet tall, but some grow 12 to 15 feet high. Why do I write about them now? The Nashville flood makes me think about that trip, about beautiful flowers and beautiful friends that I may take for granted, and I thank my lucky stars that they are in my life.