Have you ever visited a place that was so tranquil, so beautiful or so nurturing that you had to claim it as your own spot, only to find others already claimed it for the same reasons?
The Osaka Japanese Garden in Chicago’s Jackson Park is just such a place. Last week I was feeling unbelievably stressed out due to budget cuts at work, everything climbing but my my paycheck, CTA incoveniencing me for a myriad of reasons, and of course family issues. No matter how much I wanted to run away to Mexico or Cuba or Belize, I decided that maybe, just maybe my stress would be reduced by simply visiting the Garden. So last week I trudged over in the evening right before the sun was getting off work.
The Garden is as amazing in the summer as it is in the spring and fall. The beauty of the garden, the babbling brooks, the whistle of birds flying low, the slight bend of the pussy willows and the “not in a hurry” movement of the lilly pads only added to the greens, browns, oranges and yellows of the plants, flowers and trees. A blue heron flew overhead landing in the Jackson Park lagoon. It crept almost effortlessly in the water before pouncing on dinner – in this case crappie.
There are so many happenings in and around Osaka Garden that it is nearly impossible to take in all of its beauty in one visit. I love this garden. I stumbled upon it the first time in my late teens and re-visited in my 30’s, then my 40’s, then forgot it for awhile and then it found me.