Postcard From Garvan Woodland Gardens

Garvan Gardens entrance
Garvan Woodland Gardens, located at 550 Arkridge Road in Hot Springs, Arkansas is the botanical garden of the University of Arkansas. Surrounded by the Ouachita Mountains, the garden complex is comprised of a 210-acre peninsula extending into Lake Hamilton. The complex features a Welcome Center with gift shop, a wedding chapel, a restaurant, a serenity garden, a children's play and discovery area, small lakes, streams, shore-line trails and waterfront picnic facilities, miles of paved and groomed trails around and through the different themed area's and thousands upon thousands of plantings.

Pretty Azalea bush

The entry price is $10 per adult (discounts for children and seniors) and for that you can explore and marvel at the wonderful and extremely varied plants and trees for the whole day. Spring and fall are the best times to visit due to the heat and humidity during the mid-summer months, but there is plenty of shade provided by tall trees so even during the hottest months it's not too bad. Various themes with different plantings happen throughout the year so if you go once, you can go again several months later and see something entirely different. Go, take your time and have a thoroughly enjoyable day!

One day we visited, the theme was "Colored Glass." Beautiful
colored glass bowls were placed on display throughout the
park. Glass butterfly's, stained glass pictures and different
colored floating glass balls in the streams and ponds added
an unexpectedly enjoyable viewing experience. 
One of the wooded trails which wind throughout the complex
inviting "off the paved walkway" exploring. 

There are many little streams and soothing waterfalls.

Ornamental grass waving in the breeze.

Very persistent Peacock strutted around looking pretty
while begging for part of our picnic lunch. 

Life can spring from the toughest situations
Some kind of cool moss I don't know the name of not 
growing on a rolling stone.

Youngest-daughter feeding the large golden carp
in one of the ponds.

Postcard From Click, Texas

On the road to Click
There used to be a Click, Texas. It was located on ranch lands where Llano, Gillespie and Blanco counties blur together, way out where there aren't many cattle and a lot fewer people than cattle. There were only two ways in, two dusty ranch roads that met and served as the center of Click. The main road, the one from the big town of Llano, was paved with a mix of crushed shale and sand. The other, the one from everywhere else, was rutted white caliche. Neither was much used.

Back in the day when cotton was king, when you could make a good living from ranching if you could only get the cattle to market, when going somewhere was a major challenge that required planning, little stores popped up everywhere. They were the hub of the community, where folks got their supplies, where news was learned, where people met and talked and interacted with each other. And so it was at the little store in Click. Soon, a church was built and since everybody dropped by sooner or later, a Post Office was opened and Click became an official town.
The other road to Click

Click was a really peaceful place when it was established almost 150 years ago. Nothing famous or historically significant is recorded as happening there. Just a few people living their lives, helping each other when circumstances required, going to church when the circuit preacher came to town and the old cowboys too stove up to ranch anymore dipping snuff and jawing at each other as they played dominoes in the shade of the store's wooden porch. It continued to be a really peaceful place right up to when the old ones died off and the young people moved away for big opportunities in the big cities. Progress they called it.

With fewer and fewer people to serve, the post office closed in the 1940's and eventually there just wasn't enough business to keep the store going. When the owner died, his children wanted nothing to do with it and so the store was no more. The church hung on for a few more years, but the congregation became so small, no preacher man would come to preach to the few remaining faithful. The building fell into disrepair and then the unrelenting heat of the summers and the cold winter winds crumbled it to the ground. Dust to dust.

Today, Click is still a peaceful place. So quiet and peaceful you can hear the birds flying and the roadrunner's feet as he rushes across the crusted sand to catch a grasshopper lunch. What remains are a few old stone foundations, some unidentifiable rusted pieces of metal, an abandoned and broken windmill, one working windmill to bring water to the few cattle that sometimes wander by and the Honey Creek cemetery down the road a ways where many of the former Click-area residents are forever peacefully resting.

Click was doomed when people left for progress in the big city. Now people leave the big city for places like this, places where there has been no progress. Maybe Click could live again. If only there was once more a little store to serve as a hub, a place with a shady porch where you could pass the time talking to another person while sipping a cold drink and playing a friendly game of dominoes.