Roses from My Father

17 May

When I was a little girl, my father used to surprise me with roses.  Most of the gardening my father did was of a practical nature: cucumber and tomato plants, the occasional “karpouzi” (watermelon) if the raccoons didn’t get to it first (they always got to it first).  He had grown up on a farm in Greece, and gardening was not a hobby so much as a way of life and a means toward putting food on the table.  There were very few flowers in our garden in New Jersey.

In our backyard, there was a tattered fence that separated our yard from a little brook.  It was here that he planted roses.  In the spring, the thorny bushes climbed up the fence in a tangled mess.  Then one summer morning, while I was still asleep, they bloomed pink, yellow, white, and red, opening their petals up to the blue, blue sky.  My father would cut these beautiful roses and present them to me.  He told me I was a delicate flower.

I’ve been swirling in these memories of my father out in the garden, as I’ve been writing my memoir.


11 Responses to “Roses from My Father”

  1. Diane Joyce May 17, 2012 at 10:00 am #


  2. Alicia DeWitt May 17, 2012 at 10:55 am #

    This so perfectly captures your dad’s spirit. I can’t wait to read more of your writing!

    • Stephanie Nikolopoulos May 17, 2012 at 11:07 am #

      You should know—you’ve seen his gardens! These days it’s more like a working farm.

  3. Orlando May 24, 2012 at 3:25 am #

    Very beautiful moment.

  4. middletree June 12, 2012 at 12:37 pm #

    Very nice Father’s Day post, Stephanie!

    • middletree June 12, 2012 at 12:39 pm #

      I should elaborate: as a dad, this is an encouragement/reminder to me that my most important job as dad is to create memories for my kids that they’ll hold onto into adulthood.

      • Stephanie Nikolopoulos June 12, 2012 at 1:23 pm #

        So true! My father believes that the most important thing he could do was provide for his family in a financial way. I’m very thankful for my father’s work ethic and generosity, but as I’ve told him many times I would’ve liked to spend more time with him rather than have him always be at the office or away on business trips.


  1. Blogiversary: Greeks Beat Kerouac in 2012 « Stephanie Nikolopoulos - December 30, 2012

    […]  Roses from My Father […]

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    […] Roses from My Father […]

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