The summer of '69 had love.
The summer of '09 had Fireweed.
...Given, I wasn't a twinkle in my dad's eye in the Summer of '69, but somehow I grant myself the creative license to make a connection like that.
Year-related cliches aside, this was the first summer in my life when I actually saw wildflowers....being wild! What a novel idea! Go figure that I had to move to Alaska to see it, but I have fallen aesthetically in love with Fireweed. Besides its stellar looks and gorgeous color, this is a plant with major chutzpah--it's named Fireweed because it's the first thing that grows after a wildfire. Now, I'm no member of the plant family, but I think that takes some cahones...or is the florally correct term "stamen"?
The plant is a vibrant fuscia when it's in bloom, but I think it's even more beautiful when it's gone to seed, like most of the photos below. I ran down the street in my pajamas to get these shots during a (ironically, rarely) sunny sunrise.