We’re at the Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in Pittsburgh. We’ve come from afar to see new friends in a new place. We follow the maze of paths through the endless garden and our meandering conversation changes subjects as often as we change direction.

Children and bees and ants bring our focus back to the wonders around us. I stop to take pictures of the most striking flowers – but the sites surrounding us are truly only distractions.

Eventually we are back where we started, the path ends at the beginning, and in the rush to tie the loose ends of the menagerie of topics, I completely forget to visit the gift shop.

“You have already ascertained Mr. Willoughby’s opinion in almost every matter of importance. […] But how is your acquaintance to be long supported, under such extraordinary dispatch of every subject for discourse? You will soon have exhausted each favorite topic.”

From Sense and Sensibility, Chapter 12, Elinor to Marianne after the first conversation with Willoughby

We part with hugs + kisses and plans to meet again.