Eddie was in her nineties when she gave me some heirloom irises from her garden on Rogers Mesa. She’d been growing them there for at least fifty years. I didn’t know her well. She was an artist, among many facets of her long life here in the valley, and it was in this capacity that I had gotten to know her. I briefly owned an art gallery/frame shop in the late nineties, and she was a loyal patron and consistently delightful contributor to the monthly shows I hosted. I’m grateful for those years knowing her a little, and for that one afternoon she invited me over for iced tea and a garden tour, and gave me a bag of lilac, white, and pale blue irises to take home.
I thanked her for the note she’d sent inviting me over and thanking me for my work with the gallery. She told me then about a habit she’d had for decades. Every single day, she said, “I write a thank-you note to someone. I never run out of people to thank for something.” I’ve now aspired to cultivate that habit for at least as long as she was doing it, and have yet to come close to even one note a month, much less one a day. I thought about her today as the last of her irises this season faded, and I pondered my gratitudes this day. A blog a day feels so much easier than writing, addressing, stamping, and mailing a note. But is it, really, or is it just the lure of technology’s efficiency that makes it seem so?