Wise Woman Travel

Exploring the world from a female perspective

Morning, J. I just looked at Environment Canada hourly forecast. Chance of showers is “medium” (whatever that means!) during the time we’ll be at the Gardens. What do you think?

Tix are nonrefundable, right?

Yup.

I’d still go. I have an umbrella.

Me too. If I have to stay in the house one more day, I’ll scream!

So, meet in the parking lot at 11 am with rubber boots, and rain jackets and bellies.

Er…brollies. Stupid autocorrect.

When my friend Judy and I arrived at the Devonian Botanic Gardens, a University of Alberta-owned site about 15 minutes southwest of Edmonton, we knew we were in for a COVID-altered experience. Like so many other tourist attractions, the Gardens had many new protocols in place. Entry by timed reservation only. All food kiosks closed. Picnics prohibited. Benches roped off with yellow tape. Signs telling us to social distance from other patrons.

This last reminder wasn’t really a concern the day we were there, because the gardeners easily outnumbered the visitors. It also gave us the grounds almost to ourselves.

A quiet wander in a natural setting might be one of the most peaceful things we can do for ourselves in this summer of uncertainty. Flowers keep blooming, birds sit on nests, creeks flow, oblivious to the virus which has changed almost every part of our existence. Somehow, there’s a hopefulness in seeing this continuity in nature, a sense that one day, we’ll get that flow back in our own lives.

And so as the clouds leaked intermittently onto our umbrellas, we ambled, pouring our tears in each other’s ears, speculating what the world holds next for us, trying to make sense of the losses we’re experiencing. The backdrop of flower drifts, Japanese water features, and Canada geese herding their little ones along an almost deserted path replenished me, and offered reassurance that other, less challenging summers are still to come.

10 thoughts on “Grateful for gardens

  1. WIGMORE WIGMORE says:

    What a beautiful place! Not being allowed to sit would be a bummer!

    Sent from my iPad

    >

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    1. Pamela Young says:

      Ya, it kinda was. My friend had brought along a sandwich, and she had to eat it standing up, leaning on a bridge railing:(

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  2. Debbie says:

    What a great idea for a day trip/visit Pam. It certainly looked beautiful – rain or no rain. Do you use your phone to take pictures Pam?

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    1. Pamela Young says:

      Yes, Debbie, that’s the only photographic device I use these days. It’s particularly convenient for bloggers, because I can write and insert the photos, all from my phone.

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  3. AMY Sharon WEAVER says:

    I am very grateful for gardens this summers. Mine and yours too Pam.

    But thanks for bringing us along on your trip to the Devonian Gardens – I still haven’t been yet, so this was lovely.

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    1. Pamela Young says:

      Quite honestly, this may not be the best summer to pay them a visit. We enjoyed ourselves, but with quite a few of their services unavailable, you may want to wait a year or so.

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  4. Roman says:

    Thanks for the vicarious visit Pam – I’m going to go for a 1/2 hour drive in a bit; my big adventure! lol

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    1. Pamela Young says:

      You’re welcome, Roman! As my hope researcher colleague says, even a half hour drive is a little adventure these days!

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  5. Trudy says:

    Thanks for reminding me of the beauty that is in my own back yard. I live only 3 minutes from the Gardens. Have you been to Luminaria which is held there during the first week of December?

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    1. Pamela Young says:

      I have always wanted to go to the Luminaria but other December activities have always got in the way. Thanks for the early reminder. Maybe this year!

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