It was my Mum’s birthday. A day trip was planned … to somewhere … anywhere Mum might enjoy … and my sister asked for suggestions.
When we settled upon Lucknow, I suggested a side visit to the Botanic Gardens at Orange; in part because I thought Mum would enjoy it.
There was this bizarre day when I was a young teenager when she just packed us all in the car and drove to the Bumberry Hills for a picnic. We were still comparatively new to life in town. There had been some hilly country on the farm and we picnicked there from time to time. ‘Bizarre’ to that young teenager then because we weren’t going anywhere particular, just into the hills. I think she just needed to get out of town for a bit.
I can understand that now, and suggested the Botanic Gardens because I myself desperately needed to get out and under a tree canopy.
The Orange Botanic Gardens is a manageable size for a walk. Some botanic gardens are so big you have to choose between experiences. In contrast, this one packs a lot into the time it takes to follow all the available paths, about an hour or so.
On our visit that day, the range of experiences included a stray emu.
The best parks engage the senses. The sound of bird life, water running and wind rustling through the leaves and grasses. The smell of the seasons, be it flowers or dried leaves or baking dirt.
And sight … in my world view, that includes sculpture. Every park needs some man-made, unpractical forms. Plural, because taste is in the eye of the beholder. A bit of variety increases the likelihood that a visitor will approve of, or be moved by, at least one of them.
Sculpture in a park is a way of creating interesting contrasts and juxtapositions. The relationship between the sculpture and its surroundings changes as you move through and around it … very dynamic and captivating if walkers take the time to have a good look. Don’t ask if it’s a good piece. Ask instead if it’s a well-placed piece!
I enjoy the hunt for a photograph, particularly of a sculpture. Can I find something that will translate my fascination with this three dimensional object? Again, I acknowledge that taste is in the eye of the beholder!
I’ve only been to the Orange Botanic Gardens in summer. Here are a few other photos from summer visits to hint at the variety on offer …
Out-of-town walks are included on Walking in Parkes to expand the variety of experiences we can enjoy.
But more than that, places like the Orange Botanic Gardens are worth visiting each season to experience how they change. It’s not just about exercise for the body but for all our senses.
I’m looking forward to popping back in autumn, and winter (that WILL be interesting) and eventually spring.
Postscript … Mum was very impressed by the gardens.