Once upon a time there was a little girl who lived in a community of Italian truck farmers very near San Francisco. Annabella, for that was her name, spent her days in a nearby empty lot. Sometimes she stayed very still as green and white streetcars passed every twenty minutes taking riders to and from San Francisco. Most of the time she went looking for poppies and dandelions and lupines and yellow dock for they were her special friends among the wild flowers and herbs that grew in her lot.
Now and then she went to the corner of the lot where her father had planted potatoes. She loved it when the potatoes were ready. She would dig down into the sandy earth with her hands and pull out buried treasures.
Everyday she smelled the rambling rose and the mint-scented geraniums that grew by the fence. On sunny days when the fog had drifted away Annabella picked the rambling red rose petals and the mint-scented geranium leaves to make delicate flower potions. She crushed the petals and leaves with her hands and put them in water and let them sit in the noonday sun soaking up the rays. She served the energized water to her friends and they would dance and sing.
In July and August Annabella went with her parents to an orchard in Redwood City. The little family picked, cut and dried apricots. Annabella stayed in a cabin there, close to a chicken house. There were tiny flowers and herbs growing everywhere ... scarlet pimpernel, basil, sages, and rosemary.
On the other side of the farmyard-orchard fence there lived a brown faced horse. Everyday the horse came to watch Annabella as she picked her medicine flower supply. At night sometimes the moon was waxing ... it was Luna Fina. Annabella would go to sleep with the smell of leaves and flowers and the sweet earth on her hands and in her heart.