There’s one botanic garden that I’ve been meaning to visit for sometime. Smith College Botanic Garden is part of Smith College, a liberal arts college for women located in Northampton in Western Massachusetts. Now that spring is here, visiting this garden seems to be the perfect way to enjoy the season. The botanic garden is situated inside Smith College campus. This college was founded in 1871 through the endowment from Sophia Smith who wanted to use her inheritance to give better education for women and that of equal to what men receive. Smith College Botanic Garden was established in 1895 to provide teaching, public education, scientific research and also the beauty of the place. There are glass houses in the garden built in 1895 and they’re fascinating and I will talk about them in another post specifically. These glass houses is what attracted me to visit the garden.
On my way toward the garden, to my delight, I saw several saucer magnolia trees in bloom. The sound of trickling fountain from a nearby pond with a beautiful female bronze statue was heard mixing with the sound of the birds. On the side of the pathway toward the glass houses lay a beautiful rock garden. This first rock garden in North America was established in 1897 copying the rock garden at the Royal Botanic Garden at Kew in London. I stayed there for the longest time admiring the lay out of the garden that resembles the environments of high altitude area and the tundra. Some of the plants have small and succulent leaves to conserve water, rather large flowers to attract pollinators, or roots that go deeper into the underground stream. Some have short life cycle adapting to the drought season. It is a remarkable beauty to see some of the plants nestled between the rocks. It’s sort of beauty and the beast inspired.
Being in any garden, for that matter in Smith College Botanic Garden was a wonderful experience for me. Not only because I needed to take a break from the busy sometime mundane days, but also to learn about the garden. I always love learning about botany, you see. After admiring the Rock Garden, I went to the glass houses and astonished by the collections of plants being cared there. A lot of them are tropical plants and they thrive beautifully. I know some of the tropical plants having seen and planted them in my mother’s yard. She would’ve loved to come to the glass houses and probably would be amused seeing her plants are growing in a four-season country. When one of the gardener informed me that the garden would be closed at 4PM, I then headed to the garden office. I met a nice lady there who told me about another garden on the other side of campus and I’d love to visit it in June when the roses are in bloom because they have rose arches there. I ended my visit with sitting on a bench near the perennial border just relaxing even though the wind became pretty strong and chilly, waiting until the time for me to go to meet my daughter to see her orchestra concert in nextdoor city.
FALL, the most invigorating season in New England. The season of gorgeous color combinations that can make anyone swoon and head over heel. The season of apple harvest, pumpkin galore, beautiful foliage and the crisp air. Fall in New England is extravagant and exuberant. I wouldn’t want to miss one fine day in the fall so to feel its beauty. I would wait for the blue sky and sunshine to go out and take my camera with me. But sometimes I didn’t get the chance to do that and rely mostly on my camera phone. Usually this happened when I was out and about in downtown or around Yale University campus. I pass by the campus many times at least once a week. I love going about there between the stone buildings and admiring the season as it develops. I love the arrogancy of fall, of its splendor that entices my soul and makes me exclaim in delight, “Wow!”
There’s so many thoughts that have been racing in my mind. It feels as if I became stoic, senseless and hopeless. I was angry with my self for letting some people or things got a hold of me. Nobody could snap me out of it! I was in a whirlwind of thoughts, lost of purpose and I forgot to exhale. I forgot to read between the lines and see the beauty within. My friends told me to take it easy, but I refused. I put more burdens on my shoulders and I said to my self to keep on moving. I know that I’m at war with my self. My anxiety builds up and I found my self had a hard time to breath. But then there’s a voice that keeps nagging, telling me to calm down. Maybe things are not as bad as I think they would turn out. So I found a chair and sat, opened up my laptop and started to type. One word, two words, and several sentences along the way, while I listened to some of old songs. Songs that have been in my library since I was a teenager. Songs that helped me preparing for the hardest tests. There I sat, swaying my head, mimicking the lyrics and tapping my foot on the ground. I’ve found what I missed lately, a time to be by my self and find my inner peace.