Diary Entry During Quarantine, “Ugly Flower”

It's terrible that so many people are dying from Covid. I hear records being broken so often for the highest daily Covid death toll. Literally, tens of thousands of people are dying every single day. I hardly ever go outdoors, but at least today I happened to briefly glance out a window and see a flower blooming. https://photos.app.goo.gl/GRASsmS8wf1Q9hEYA Not this flower, I'm just taking this opportunity to show the ugliest flower I've ever seen so that you appreciate other plants more. My own backyard managed to be disconcerting because I was just so used to the same old furniture and computer screen that represent my stagnant and colorless life indoors. This blossoming flower was as if a random child had called my name out of nowhere. Once I focused, my first thought was: this flower is kind of ugly—though not as ugly as the one in the above shot. It was just your average flower-that-is-also-definitely-a-weed, you know what I mean. I just searched up “what do you call a weed flower?” A mistake. Hopefully, this was obvious, but I didn't mean a flower that is weed, I meant a flower that is a weed: an infestation that clogs up your yard and magically sprouts from concrete. . . . don't do weed. Moving on, the pandemic has made me bitter, and the minimal social contact has caused my emotions to become bottled up. How dare some plant grow and live when literally tens of thousands of people are dying every day? Then, I realize: at least this albeit weird, random, and little flower gets to grow and live when people are dying every day. At least, life will continue, even if humans die out. Plenty of weird, random, and little things, like my younger brother and other pests, are just too stubborn to ever give up. They'll live on no matter where we've gone. Where there are flowers, there is hope, even if, correction, even when they're ugly (because there will always be ugly ones). Yes, where there is nature, even when it's ugly and actually turns out to be weeds, there is hope. I don't know if I missed nature the most in terms of feelings. In fact, I haven't given it a single thought until today, but it's like I'm meeting it all over again, and it's, well, amazing. https://photos.app.goo.gl/Sq592iVk2SKWk48J7 And any nature you see is bound to be prettier than the spiky dandelion copycat growing out of my family's green onions. I thought maybe I'd write something nice about flowers and hope but was extremely let down to find no other flowers in the backyard for inspiration. As a last resort, I turned to the stuff growing on top of the green onions, which I think look too weird to even be classified as weeds. They actually seem kind of exotic or maybe my brain is getting fuzzy because I need sleep. I spent a whole second looking for my glasses before I realized that I was wearing them. In the end, the green onion stalks are edible, and that's what really matters. In the afternoon, I went outside to ponder the plant some more. I took a step out of the door, and the first things I noticed were the sun and its warmth, the sky and how blue it is, the plants and how they seem to glow with green life, and then the little bugs and how they crawl around. It was a perfect sunny day (despite the bugs). The distant noise made it seem like I was a part of the world again. Without a mask covering my nose and mouth, even the air I breathed seemed fresher and sweeter. I felt free. I felt alive. The previous paragraph was all in my head. When I went out, it was completely dark already, which is probably why I couldn't find proper flowers. I did notice that the moon, stars, and night sky were beautiful. This was probably because of the contrast between the dark, black sky and the bright, white moon and stars. There were also the vague shapes that seemed to be both in the stars as constellations and in the moon as shadowy figures. There was the silence. However, I only registered the colors and shapes in my unconscious mind. Consciously, I just noticed that the night was beautiful and spent a few seconds marveling at it. Then, I noticed the silence. Next, I was too busy running around with a phone as a makeshift flashlight trying to find flowers, so I didn't notice anything abstract. Finally, I got too cold and didn't want to get bitten by mosquitoes, so I made do with the green onions and went back into my cozy home. It hadn't seemed that cozy and welcoming for a long time because it had slowly faded into the background, as is easy for literal background to do. I guess it can be better to think of home as a safe place and destination so that you're happy to be there instead of indifferent because it's just the background. A lot of stories probably end with this sentence, so here it is: I was glad to be home. Side note: Part of this story is sarcastic. I only wish to make hope more meaningful by showing that anyone, even if they're feeling angry or cynical, can find that hope.

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