‘Be sure to stop and smell the roses’ is a cliché. If an author uses the line, readers may feel the writing is trite, that the author took the easy route instead of working for a fresh and original turn of phrase. ‘Stop and smell the roses’ would probably not get past a good editor with a sharp pencil.
But we have in fact been stopping to smell the roses on our walks each day. The Tuscan climate, with its low humidity, bright sunshine, and higher elevation, is well suited for roses, and the bushes produce abundant quantities of stunning red, white, pink, and apricot blooms. Tuscan yards often boast several rose bushes or vines twining along fences. It would be – or should be – a crime to pass and not stop to admire.
The roses are joined by peonies, petunias, and poppies that have come into season just in the last week. People who know me know I love to take pictures of flowers. Tuscany is giving me ample opportunity.
One of my desires for this month abroad is to enjoy each moment. As they demand I stop and admire them, the roses do their best to ensure I achieve this desire.
Each time I stop to look at a rose, I breathe in a little bit of this amazing life. Actually stopping to smell the roses doesn’t seem trite at all.