A geeky girl living in the big city, making her way, the only way she knows how... no wait, that's The Dukes of Hazzard. Who am I again? Oh yeah, a pop culture obsessed writer, publishing person, and occasional nerd. And I'm getting married. I talk about that, too.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

8 Kisses from Serbians

In a taxi on my way to dinner after my drinks with the Serbians - who couldn't have been nicer.  I have to try to work out a way for the office to cover a trip to visit Eastern Europe. There's a bookfair in Belgrade right after Frankfurt, or one in Prague in the spring that sounds deliciously tempting. And then I was told about the Mediterranean's longest beach in Cyprus...

Anyway, went from drinks at my hotel across the street to meet my boss and share a cab with her and the Gallic version of our company's senior partner to the grand crush and gala of the fair, which I've just left.  Crowded, and though I could have happily stayed and socialized, I promised my coworker I'd come to her dinner party.  At a very German restaurant named Edelweiss.  I feel like singing, or escaping through the Alps.  One of the two.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ants! Ants! Ants!

a friend

10/20/2005 10:08 PM

Blogger Hythian said...

Nifty resteraunt name.

Edelweiss means noble and white in German. Though I can't actually remember if that is two seperate meanings ( "n" and "w" ) or one combined meaning ( "n and w" ).

It is also a rather pretty mountain flower from the Alps which is a short-lived perennial and that has that song about it from the Sound of Music.

It used to be considered a medicinal plant, and teas and infusions of it were fond to have at least minor beneficial effects in the treating of dysentary and tuberculosis. I think I remember seeing it being advertised as extracts of it being in some skin care stuff recently.

A bouquet of the flowers itself was considered one of the ultimate love charms and desperate suitors used to climb the mountains and brave the cliffs to try to pick them. Since they are a short-lived perennial, after a few seasons of pickings they would disappear from an area so it wasn't an easy task, often dozens of people yearly would die in the attempts. It is still apparently considered something of a sign of bravery or machismo for a man to wear one of the blooms.

The song in the Sound of Music about the flower is only half-correct. The flowers aren't actually snowy white blossoms, they have a leaf structure that is silvery-white with a hint of green. The flower itself at the center of the leaf cluster is actually a golden yellow from a dusting of pollen that will cover them.

Franz Josef and his wife Sisi, Austrian Emperor and wife, were very fond of the flowers. As was Ludwig the 2nd ( Ludwig the Mad ) who built Neuschwanstein.

They are actually sort of a protected species in some parts of the Alps due to having been over-picked. They are apparently very rare now to see in the wild because of it.

And yes, crazy geeky knowledge upon my part. Part of having written a bit of Victorian era fiction once ( that I never finished ) which heavily relied upon the subtleties of the "Language of Flowers" for plot points.

10/21/2005 3:36 AM

Blogger Hythian said...

Doh, my bad, the part the song in the Sound of Music was correct about, like snowflakes no two blooms of the flowers will be identical.

10/21/2005 3:37 AM

Blogger ***Dave Hill said...

I've never done Victorian flower fiction (well, perhaps a bit alongside playing Nobilis), but some nice resources on the song, and the flower, can be found here:


10/21/2005 10:26 AM

Blogger Hythian said...

My problem in writing it was that it was, other then roses and what people think they mean today, such a completely foreign concept and such a complex set of signals and concepts that to explain it so that it made sense made it very quickly start reading like the cetology chapters from Moby Dick with intersperced spatterings of dialogue.

10/21/2005 11:04 AM


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