Magnolias.

Massive Magnolia Tree. On my drive down, I couldn’t help but noticed the abundance of fantastic looking trees that populated the highway sides. My mouth slightly ajar, my foot heavy on the gas pedal my stomach empty and my bladder full, I wasn’t really up for doing sight seeing or slowing down to look at stuff. So I pushed on, well above the speed limit to get to my destination in a timely manner.

That is, until I saw a magnolia tree. I unfortunately missed the blossoming of the trees probably by about 2 weeks (too early) but until I went to North Carolina, I had never seen a fully matured one in person. I am perpetually dumbfounded by these ancient trees when I ever I see them. Their leaves are fat and waxy and the branches are elegant. I felt this stupid sense of wonder when I zoomed by one on the highway, my breath sharp in the back of my throat. I probably would’ve about died if they were in bloom when I was down there.

This particular magnolia tree was in the front yard of Reynolda, R.J. Reynolds’ Estate. I wanted to stay underneath the big, winding branches and the fat leaves and read and stay cool. I wanted to give that massive trunk a hug just because it existed and I couldn’t get my arms around it if I tried. I collected about a dozen of their seed pods to bring home with me.

Magnolia. Such a lovely word, too. I’d like one day to have a magnolia tree in my front yard.