Sadly, the succulents from my birthday did not survive me or summer (though probably it was me). One by one, they withered, wilted, and died. With each death, so died my hopes of ever getting anything to survive on this sun-baked balcony of my apartment. For several months, I have resisted buying new plants, hardening my heart against their cute greenery. From my office window, I have gazed out at the empty plant holder and thought, I'm doing the right thing. Nothing else need die at my hand.
It was rather dramatic, but I never really paid attention. I would look at that lonely white plant holder and think of all the plants that have died there, then look away. All in all, bad feng shui. But it was an insidious thought that existed in my subconscious. If you'd asked me what I saw when I looked out the window, my gaze would have shifted to the trees beyond the balcony and described that, or the weather, or something in the foreground.
For a plant that needs very little watering, they sure do require a lot of care. I hope I'm up for the task!