There are almost as many ways of viewing the abundant display of wild flowers as there are types of visitors now in Paradise Valley at this season of the year. For the most part it is a matter of temperament or individual taste.
There is the burly fellow for instance, for whome delicate flower tints hold but slight appeal. To trample under foot the fragile plants that cling to the slopes means little for nothing to him, as he strides along, with rod and bait, intent upon reducing the number of trout in some nearby lake or stream.
Then we have, too, the gushing tourist who exclaims loudly over the lavish display which nature has so prodigally provided, but whose interest lies but on the surface. She does not hesitate to pluck handfuls of gorgeous blossoms, only to discard them at the side of the trail a few minutes later when they wilt, as wild flowers do when held in the hand.
Signboards warning that flower picking is forbidden stare at her in vain. Then cautioned by someone that that flower fields are protected by law against despoilation she usually pleads ignorance.
The true lovers of flowers, on the other hand, evince a spirit that makes the intricate labor of nature seem well worth while. Fortunately there are many more of this type then might be supposed. How fondly they linger over the delicate petals of the dog's tooth violet, marvel at the superb workmanship and color displayed in the wild tiger lily, or with an intense longing for a deeper knowledge of the flowering plants that make their home on Rainier's sunny slope, steal away to some quiet nook either for reverent study or to try with brush and colors to hold the fletting impressions of beauty that so rapidly change and shift from day to day.
For some it is vastly important to learn the scientific name of each and every kind of blossom, to list them in sundry notebooks, or to accomplish the feat of remebering them all. For others it is sufficient to be told the names, then promptly to forget.
Nevertheless, regardless of the classification in which the observer belongs, he or she cannot fail to carry away something of an uplifting nature, whether consciously or otherwise, after viewing the multi-colored fields of Paradise, now approaching their best. For the latter offer not only inspiration and beauty to those who will accept their message, but also help to point the way toward an understanding of the Creator's plan, which after all is the goal of human intelligence.
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