Emma in Euroland

Tea, Cake and Travel: a year abroad in Germany

I must stay strong for my plants.

Sally Sparrow the Sansevieria

Let me introduce you to the newest additions to my family, Sally Sparrow and Clive. Sally is a Sansevieria and Clive is a Cyclamen.

“Oh God, she’s gone mad hasn’t she. How should we tell her?”

I hear you, I really do. I come from a household which has always had pets. After our first cat, Ben, died, we didn’t get a new cat for a few months. We then went on our annual holiday and came back to an empty house. There was noone to make the house feel warm, noone to make us glad to be home. We missed him. It was then that we decided that the Bensons weren’t the Bensons without a furry friend to keep them company. Since then, we have pretty much never been without one.

In my times away from my lovely cats, I seem to have adopted plants instead. When I first went to uni, I read something somewhere which recommended getting plants for your room as this makes it feel more like home. I took this one step further and gave them names, researched caring for them and, keep this to yourselves, spoke to them every so often. As you have heard in previous posts, to continue on this path of slowly becoming an eccentric old cat lady, we bought a plant. I have called it Sally Sparrow.

As you can imagine, Sunday was a very sad day for me. I spite of this, I couldn’t understand how happy I was, mere hours before he left, simply because he was still there. It’s as if, just this once, my heart couldn’t bare to waste a single second of happiness as it could be such a long time until we see each other again. I even lost my camera during this period but he kept me calm and I wasn’t anywhere near as stressed as I would have been under any other circumstance. In an effort to try to prolong this feeling as long as possible, on our way to the train station we stopped at a florist and bought a beautiful plant with pink flowers. Anybody who’s spent much time in Germany will know that nothing happens on a Sunday. Everything shuts and you can barely buy milk. Not only that, but this whole process starts around lunchtime on Saturday. In fact, we had tried to buy a plant the day before but had not got to the florist in time. So now, it feels like the plant on the desk in front of me was fate.

Droopy flowers this morning 😦

This vein of fate seems to have continued. I had no idea what this beautiful potted plant was and hadn’t thought to ask in the shop as the woman seemed too preoccupied being annoyed that she was working on a Sunday. Now another sad fact about myself: My plant’s names begin with the same letter as their ‘given name’ or species. Orla the Orchid. Malcolm the Money Tree. Sally the Sansevieria. How could I name my newest addition without knowing what it was? No name seemed to fit and it seemed that he or she would remain nameless. Fate hit again.

“Cyclamen are funny, they go domant.”

“What did you just say?! Are you seriously telling me that you know what this plant that I’m waving about on Skype is?!”

So there you have it, my mother is an infinite fountain of knowledge. Quite honestly, between my mum and my dad, I’m not sure there is any question they couldn’t give a perfectly reasonable answer to. I was showing my cyclamen to her because when I woke up this morning, all the flowers had drooped and fallen to the sides. When I saw this, I watered it, checked for any problems and hoped that it would be better when I returned that evening. Thankfully it was and it is now sitting beside me with perfect flowers and beautiful silvery leaves. It was as if it forced me to care for it so as to distract myself from how sad I was about Ramsey leaving. I had to be strong for my plants.

Only, my cyclamen is no longer an ‘it’. Let me introduce you to my pink potted Clive the Cyclamen. How do you do.

Why hello there Clive.



  1. Uncle Peter

    Clive is sooo cute!

    • Emma in Euroland

      I know, he’s amazing isn’t he!

  2. Remember, you only have to worry if the plants talk back to you – a lot. 🙂

    • Emma in Euroland

      Haha, I’ll put my mind at rest until then then! 🙂

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