Like every other day, six years ago, I waited for the 4.30 bus, and she for her father. Another girl used to ride with her, but those past few days, she was alone.
We never once talked though—just waited silently side by side at the same spot every day. That Tuesday afternoon, she spoke.
“Did you know that the snowdrop flower was created from a snowflake?”
I stared at her, startled that she spoke. She looked back at me with piercing blue eyes. My heart fluttered; for the first time, I could see her face properly.
I remember thinking of how much she reminded of Arwen from the Lord of the Rings books—ethereal is the word, yes.
Not wanting to seem like a weirdo, I quickly averted my eyes, and shook my head. I was surprised that she initiated conversation, and I was intrigued both by her and her story.
“An angel of God created it. He wanted to comfort Eve, after she was expelled from Eden, and, so, he created the first snowdrop by catching a snowflake in his hand and breathing into it.”
“It then fell onto Earth, and has continued blooming ever since...” She told me that the snowdrop was her birth flower, or January’s birth flower. She also told me its Greek name, but I don't recall what it was now.
“The snowdrop is believed to symbolise Hope, you know...” Sadness crept into her voice, and she continued softly, “but it is also unlucky.”
“People believed that you bring disaster to your home when you bring a snowdrop into your house.”
I hesitated, unsure of what to say or do. I decided to give her a gentle nudge to show that I was willing to listen.
She said that her stepsister had been crying in her sleep, because their parents had been quarrelling a lot lately.
I found out that she was an orphan—her real parents had died in a car crash when she was six.
“I guess it’s true then, you know, what they say about snowdrops bringing disaster wherever they go,” she whispered, and lowered her head.
I remember, at that moment, feeling a strong urge to... I don’t know, protect? I know at least that I wanted very much for her to know then that she is not alone.
I heard the bus coming, again. I had already missed the 4.30 one, and had to take the coming bus to reach home in time for dinner. I desperately searched my brain for something to say, but nothing seemed right.
So, I took her hand and gave it a tight squeeze. Then I ran to the bus.
Suddenly it struck me, and I turned back to her and shouted, “You told me a snowdrop represents Hope too. I think I will rather believe in that.”
As the bus drove away, I waved at her through the glass window. She just looked at me, with a small, sad smile on her face.
I never saw her again, and I never found out her name. So, in my memories, I called her Snowdrop.
Snowdrop – An angel’s creation, a child of January, pure and delicate as a snowflake, and a symbol of Hope.