Secret Gardens

One of the perks of being a visitor in Ogunquit is that we sometimes see things that others miss (including things that we’ve missed in our dozen years frequenting the area). Case in point: the Dorothea Grant Common at the Ogunquit Heritage Museum. The museum was closed for the season, but the small stretch of grounds around the little building beckoned us to explore its leaf-strewn path, so we made a slow amble beneath the trees, walking the grounds as the sun peeked through the pines and oaks. Faded gardens, about to go to bed for another year, were still discernible beneath the blanket of wet leaves.

It’s always a thrill to discover a hidden garden. It makes the flowers that dare to remain so much more special and, in their late-hour way, more spectacular. On this particular perfectly-Fall day, more leaves had fallen in the windy night, and a hidden band of marauding squirrels threw acorns down at all trespassers. It was, in a word, idyllic ~ at least for this Hawthorne-loving Fall-o-phile. We walked around the path, hearing the occasional chirp of a chipmunk and inspecting the once-glorious gardens, now lost in their seasonal death spiral.

Andy always greets the annual slumber of a garden with sadness and despondency, but it offers a sort of welcome relief for me. When you’re the one hoisting cow manure and chopping up unruly clumps of Miscanthus, Fall can offer a gratifying perspective. (And since Andy mows the lawn, a bit of this relief is most certainly shared.)

Two roads diverged in a wood…
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