Ten on Tuesday Meets Throwback Thursday: Games People Play
Sharing Space

Looking Back, Heading Forward

"The best of nature's handiwork in a limited space. . . "
                       -----  Landscape gardener Seyemon Kusumoto

I first visited San Francisco in January 1980 -- during Winter Break of my junior year of college.  I drove there with Tom (my then-boyfriend) and two of our friends (one had a medical school interview out there, which was the purpose of our journey).  It was a quick trip - and I remember packing a lot of adventure into just a couple of days!

While walking through Golden Gate Park, we stumbled on to the Japanese Tea Garden.  It was deliciously foggy -- and so magical!

Scan 1
Tom in 1980, running through the fog in Golden Gate Park somewhere near the Japanese Tea Garden.

I had never heard of Japanese gardens before that visit.  I had no expectations or knowledge or understanding.  I just knew . . . when I stepped into that foggy garden . . . that I was feeling a strong, deep connection with the landscape.  Ever since, I have been fascinated with Japanese gardens.  (I actually think it may have been that visit to the Tea Garden that spurred my own interest in becoming a gardener!)

Although I have been back to San Francisco a few more times over the years, I've never been back to the Japanese Tea Garden!  A return trip was high on my list of "must-dos" this time around.


And so, on another foggy day, over 30 years later, my sister and I headed out to Golden Gate Park - in search of the Japanese Tea Garden.  As we enjoyed a leisurely stroll through the garden, the fog cleared, allowing us to enjoy the traditional Japanese garden. . .  with features like the pagoda (above), an arched drum bridge . . .


stone lanterns. . .


koi, stepping stones, and native Japanese plants.


We enjoyed the zen garden . . .


and found a tranquil oasis . . .


perfect for contemplation . . .


and meditation.


Such a lovely afternoon . . .


made complete with tea . . .


and a fortune.


Words in the wild . . . from the Japanese Tea Garden!


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We visited there in 1988 I think - such a wonderful place. Glad you got to take in the whole experience!


I have yet to visit the Japanese garden and now I'm even more determined to get to SF soon. The fortune is a perfect one for you.


What a lovely visit! Thank you for taking us along.


What a wonderful fortune!! Hm. I'll have to add the Japanese garden to my list for next time! It's beautiful.


That looks wonderful and simple and beautiful.


There is a Japanese garden in Grand Forks. I've never stopped there but now I guess I need to! I can feel the calm coming through your pictures... :)


Thank you for your nice tour of Japanese garden.
Less is more, isn't it?


I missed that Japanese garden when I was there but wish I had seen it. I would have loved the calmness. Also important: where did you get those shoes?

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