View from the Moon Bridge towards the Strolling Pond Garden.
Last Friday was Veterans Day, so my family and I decided to celebrate the long weekend with a road trip to Oregon, a state that has so far avoided our radar despite its many great gardens and good coffee houses. The first stop on our agenda was the Portland Japanese Garden, but already on the gate we were met by a uninterrupted train of Portlanders. A free entrance to celebrate the holiday and an interesting exhibition of antique Japanese textiles meant that instead of enjoying a serene stroll through the gardens, we had to queue through them, repeating a polite "excuse me" when accidentally bumping to other gardens lovers at every turn. Understandably, our experience of the otherwise lovely gardens was anything but zen.
The upper pond in the Strolling Pond Garden.
Waterfall running through the mossy stones to the lower, small pond.
Leaves and needles finding their way past mossy stones - a perfect miniature landscape.
A bit irritated by all busyness, I photographed my way through the gardens desperately trying to find angles without pink or yellow raincoats as unintended focus points. Only afterwards I realized that the crowd was just what I should have photographed. I mean, how many gardens are so well loved that hundreds of visitors from babies to centenarians gather there to spend their precious day off? Not many, but this one definately belongs to them. I missed my opportunity to tell that story, but here is a selection of my very deceptively empty garden pictures.
The Sand and Stone Garden; the leaves add movement to the otherwise static landscape...
The Sand and Stone Garden as seen from the upper level; the Japanese gardens are nestled on the deep western hills of the city of Portland.
The Flat Garden as seen from the Pavillion, which is used for exhibitions; this time, we saw "Mottainai", a beautifully touching exhibition of antique textiles from rural Japan.
The Flat Garden from another view point; this must have been the last weekend to see all the blazing autumn colors before the leaves fall.