Friday, May 20, 2011

Raphaella visits Sarasota's Marie Selby Gardens at last!

A few blocks from downtown Sarasota lies the beautiful property that is Marie Selby Gardens. The history of Marie Selby and her beautiful gardens can be found on their website by clicking here.

The garden fence that borders the property looked so small from Mound Street, for years I would speed on by to go to Whole Foods on 1st, or head for Main Street to buy French bread and croissants, or go to the Burns Court area for lunch, to see a film, or an art opening. Plus, knowing the entrance fee is $17, I let almost three years go by without a visit to this beautiful place.

Now that I've been there I must emphatically tell you the $17 entrance fee is worth every penny. I, for one, can't wait to return for another day of writing, photography, poetry, art, and inspiration. It's that kind of a place. When I lived in Los Angeles, I often visited Huntington Gardens in Pasadena for the same reasons. In Minneapolis, it was the conservatory at Como Park or the beautiful Minnehaha Falls. In San Francisco, it was the redwoods of Muir Woods in Marin. In Miami, my parents and I often visit Fairchild Gardens. We plan to go again in June. Flowers and green living things, in sunlight or in the rain, always inspire me to create more beauty with art and words of my own.

My friend Patty, an artist and musician who moved to the Gulf coast of Florida around the same time as I did in 2008, bought a season's pass to another museum in town and had a guest pass for Selby Gardens for the month of May. Luckily she invited me to join her. The weather this week has been glorious, so when she called yesterday to remind me it was the day we planned to go, I put aside my work, grabbed my camera and off we went.

Approaching noon, I was hungry when we arrived so we found the garden cafe and treated ourselves to an amazing wholesome lunch. We stopped briefly at the poi pond to enjoy the ducklings, and then we walked for hours, thrilled with every turn at the beauty unfolding before our eyes. Click here to see photos from our day in paradise. Let the images be inspiration for your life and your art, whatever that may be. And walk with me in spirit as you sense the beauty in this place.
 -Raphaella Vaisseau

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