Joyce Kilmer, can I get a witness?

In the cit-ay…

So, I have been wandering around the fine city of Christchurch the last two days, waking around the main square, checking out a couple of museums and galleries and cafes and such. Many of the older stone buildings are surrounded by skeletal scaffolding, and all buildings have inspection papers taped to their front doors. It took me a while to realize that these were a result of the big earthquake that came rumbling through this past September. Apparently they were still getting aftershocks up until just a couple of weeks ago. Miraculously, no one was killed as the quake hit at 4:30 in the morning when few people were out. All of the scaffolding does give the city an odd feel. While I wandered, I did end up spending most of both days in the amazingĀ Botancial Gardens. This brings us to part two of today’s program…

Dryad Dork-Out: In which we rhapsodize about our sylvan friends.

What a place is this! Ent-haven, faerie-wood, magic-land… Place of old, old friends. The trees! Oh, what trees! Trees with stories, trees with soul. It is a dendrophile’s paradise.

Towering redwoods, eucalyptus to make a koala cry, cork oak (we salute you!), weeping willows, monkey puzzle, king of all horse chestnuts, sweet Monterey cypress…and the atlas cedar…giant of the wood, great many-fingered palm of a tree, poised and reaching, ready to hold the entire world in her cup.

Oh, how I wanted to climb! I felt such a strong and instant love for this place, I sort of walked around feeling high on such happiness. These trees… They make you wish you could just be taken into them…like a drop of water hitting a needle or leaf. To rush through those slick elevators, xylem and phloem…to lean toward the sun and stretch to the sky, breathing out tremendous puffs of oxygen.

At times it felt like it wasn’t quite enough to merely rub a palm over roughed bark or rest my head against a trunk. At times I wanted to become that tree.

Yes, I am a tree-hugger. But you already knew that.

Ode complete.

But seriously, if ever some terrible apocalyptic event were to befall the human race, and I was, you know, like the only survivor and had to stay within the city limits… You know I’d be kicking it in these gardens…scheming, surviving, booby-trappin’. Watching the manicured lawns turn back into jungle. (Yes, this is the kind of stuff I think about, thank you Margret Atwood.)

All that said, not being a very urban person,
I am ready to get out of town.

Tomorrow I head to my first farm-stay.

Bum bum bummmm.

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