|Berkeley the snail|
Going to gardens was quite out of the question so, instead, we went shopping and to museums. Just down the street from our hotel was a shop that dealt in garden ornaments (they have such things in England) and the snail pictured on the left was prominently on view. We purchased it, promptly named it after our lodgings - pronounced, by the way, “BARK-lee” - and carried it in the overhead bin on the flight home. (In that pre-9/11 world, no one in airport security took notice of our carrying onboard a 12-inch-by-fifteen-inch cast-iron object.) Every year since, Berkeley has been positioned in a different perennial bed, waiting to be admired anew by us or a visitor.
|The World's Ugliest Frog|
I will not bore you with the individual stories for each of our other garden ornaments. I will only tell you that they all have back stories and that all those stories link us to times, places or people fondly remembered.
|The Winterthur turtle and its pond|
Each spring, we take out these items much as we take out Christmas tree ornaments in December. We discover them anew and, with great deliberation, place them around the property, taking into account changes in the landscape. This season, a chamaecyparis in our outer sidewalk bed pushed into the space long occupied by the turtle and its bath. The pair became the first occupants of the new wisteria bed and they look terrific there.
|Fish, another garden ornament|