The following is a journal entry from my recent trip to New Zealand.
Sunday, March 3, 2013; Dunedin, South Island, New Zealand
The day began with a wonderful, meditative visit to Dunedin Botanic Gardens, the most beautiful garden I have ever seen.
It’s the oldest in New Zealand – just celebrated 150 years – and in my estimation the most beautiful and varied. (At one point I found myself comparing it to Hortus Botanicus in Amsterdam. There’s really no comparison, as they are very different in type, size and memory.)
After quietly wandering for nearly an hour – we had been dropped off at 8:00 a.m. – I found a beautiful, quietly secluded place to sit and meditate and write.
Those thoughts follow …
The Botanic Gardens in Dunedin.
If we had another full day here I would come in the morning (with a picnic lunch) and spend the entire day here.
If I lived in Dunedin, I would come here once a week. It would take years to see all of it; even longer to truly know it.
The sounds of traffic and humans is faintly in the background.
More noticeable are the morning greetings of various birds,
the quiet rustle of a rabbit and other birds in the undergrowth,
the wind in the leaves of the trees,
the gravel crunching under my shoes,
and the quiet, frequent sound of my chuckles of delight at what I see.
All shades of greens and browns and yellows;
trees (tall and short),
herbs and roses and protea and others.
Bold and delicate; coming into bloom or fading at the end of cycle.
As I walk, the scents change from musty to pungent, boldly sweet, lightly scented.
At the herb garden I was given permission (which, to me, is encouragement) to take a small piece to smell as I walk.
Lavender and rosemary, of course.
And the roses! Oh, my! Even in their late-summer decline they are fragrant and lovely!
The threat of rain ended my writing. Covered with rain gear, umbrella at the ready, I walked back to the “lower garden” and enjoyed the knot garden,
brilliantly colored borders,
the Pergola Garden
(and the pied shag just on the other side of the shelter);
and many more delights too numerous to remember!