I don't think we're in Kansas anymore

Do you know what poppies symbolize? Hint: it’s not so pretty.

According to Greek and Roman mythology, poppies were used as a symbol of sleep (hey opioids!) and death.

They’re also a symbol of the bloodiness of war.

Word on the street is the poppy fields in Europe were born out of some tragic times. In a post-World War I France and Belgium, poppies began popping up around the ruins and rubbles of war. The large amounts of crumbled limestone, paired with the organic matter near gravesites, caused a bloom around soldiers’ gravesites.

One species of poppy, Papaver somniferum, is the source of the narcotic drug opium…we all know what that does…

First and foremost: not one single poppy was harmed by me or anyone around me at any point of my time in or around this famous area. And shame on your early Insta-jerks for causing the most played out flower fight in decades.

Yes, there were far too many people there.

Yes, we had to park super far.

Yes, there were individuals in gear that in no way could sustain an actual hike. Is it really worth it for the gram, ladies? Is it?

BUT everyone was really nice!

The media dude, sheesh. There was some true floral crime in the beginning I agree, but the general vibes are full petal to the metal with all the lovelies around. People shared tips, vantage points, offers of selfie-help was galore. Do yourself a favor and see them below or get the guide on #LadyHikers.

PSA: No dogs, bikes on trails, drones, or picking flowers (obvi!) and you can find helpful information and park maps from the fine California folks at Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve State Natural Reserve.

Charlie has over 10 years experience in social media, creative copy and multimedia, including a 4-year stint in the government, making science cool and accessible to the general public. She is now the main lady behind Checkmark Creative, a marketing boutique for the small biz and freelancer, based in Long Beach, CA.