He had an idea for an attraction. It was based on a television documentary he had seen about the manufacture of silk flowers. In it women sat around a large table fed by slow-moving production lines which conveyed green stems to them already wrapped with dark green silk as tightly as skinny cigars below the wire armatures of the blossoms. The wire shapes seemed nothing less than moths with the membrane of their wings not yet filled in.
The women fitted the various colors on the blossoms, adding stamens and such as necessary. They seemed very friendly, chatting together as they worked, setting the finished flowers upon another conveyer which sent them off to be packaged, the latter conveyor a stream of colors.
His idea was for a permanent garden, a year round attraction, with silk flowers and perhaps a cobalt blue pond of plate glass under which crystal carp swam like gold zeppelins.
He could imagine small insects-- grasshoppers and praying mantises for instance-- formed from twisted wire and powered by small magnetic or electronic motors. What he had in mind was something like Tinguely's sculptures but at a miniature scale. It would be interesting if someone could devise a kind of windchime in the shape of small shrubs or even fenceposts. Or perhaps not a chime as much as a sort of low whistle or flute which one could hear only faintly.
Different scents would also be good. Perhaps the insects could release them as they moved among the silk flowers. And the whole place would be lighted at night like the Tivoli.
Suddenly she began talking (this was in public, swallows sailed overhead, lovers and old women went in twos and to and fro) about how it was impossible to count.