I am honored to have this San Francisco treasure so close to my home. The Japanese tea garden is the oldest in the United States. I had visited here in my 20s with a dear friend of mine when I was living in Los Angeles. Now it is a little over 2 miles away from my home.
Cherry trees, koi fish, birds, and plants imported from Japan give visitors and the garden Zen. The tranquility, the beautiful bridges & buildings, the sweet smells, the perfectly manicured garden transported me to a world 5,000 miles away.
But at the end of the day, it's an affectionate koi fish that stole my heart. He followed me and my camera around. My panoramic experimentation turned into an up close and personal with a Koi fish that I named Buddy. Yes. Buddy... like a dog. Buddy helped me see things differently that afternoon. I'd even venture to say that we made a connection. I waited across the pond, and gosh darn it, he would swim to meet me. I would even call him and he would turn. I was amazed. A grounds keeper approached me and told me how to pet the orange koi. I realized this fish was something really special. I didn't want to leave, but I did. I said good-bye to Buddy. And hoped that our encounter somehow resulted in good fortune.
- © 2012 by Hayley Thisltehwaite. All Rights Reserved.