Resurrecting Pergola

Published January 21st, 2019

The Pergola at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden has been restored! And you know, my friends, I am full of words to say, metaphors to make, and general philosophizing on the theme of 'sometimes everything has be torn down before new life can begin again'.

The Pergola suffered severe damage when Hurricane Irma hit Miami back in 2017. When I came to the Garden six months ago, just after I wrote the blog about Turning 50, I found what was left of the Vine Pergola largely demolished. My heart sank. (See photos)

Over these few months, I still came to my beloved Fairchild Garden, but I worked on other writing, reflected on life, and even visited their NightGarden display for the holiday season. So you can imagine my joy today when I was able to do my walking meditation back through Vine Pergola! It has a new brick walkway, restored stone pillars and new timbers. Some old vines that were cut back are growing again, being trained by ropes. And some brand new tropical vines are being planted. It felt very different, especially with so much open space; not the cocooned womb of plant walls I remember walking through over the years.

But you know...I felt liberated. So much of this blog has been about pillars, structures, the architecture of life and how vital these are to societies, cultures and our personal lives. The vines, the growing and evolving plant life, use this structure for support, for strength, this is what defines a Pergola. So what the heck happens when it is all torn down? Death? Chaos? A land of confusion?

I think I felt liberated because sometimes we don't notice that certain structures are no longer nourishing us, until they actually come down, fall apart, or disappear. It is time to ask ourselves why? Is the foundation old or no longer working? Perhaps it is time to build something stronger, wiser, and more resilient. As I was walking through the new structure of Vine Pergola today I felt elated, almost reborn, and excited to see what starts to grow and blossom along the pillars and timbers over these next monthsSometimes you just have to be patient, witness changes with the eyes of a child, staying open to infinite possibilities.

Enjoy your life my friends! Through the downs and the ups...

Ashe