May 9, 2014 (iPhone 5s)
I wish I had taken more illustrative photographs of this garden in Hvar but I was in search of something and felt limited in time. This wasn’t the garden I was looking for but I roamed around hoping it might be as it seemed so perfect, plus I couldn’t seem to locate the entrance to the other garden.
I was in search of a time capsule. The plan was to find it, read it and then put it back and never tell the person I had read it. I was pretty excited about the plan’s execution. It’s hard to turn your back on Hvar’s water view dotted with small deserted islands and its tiny port. You don’t want to go further inland, you always want to go toward the sea or toward the islands. But here I was walking behind the city’s bus parking lot and down a long back alley in search of a garden and a museum which used to be some guy’s home.
As soon we settled into our hotel room, I asked the hotel receptionist if she knew of a museum that used to be someone’s home with a garden and stone wall. She had no idea what this place could be. A few minutes later, an idea flashed inside her mind, are you talking about the Franciscan monastery, it has a garden? It sounded wrong. No, I answered. Then she realized oh it must be the home of Hvar’s famous poet. Poet! Yes, that must be it.
The birdhouse, blending in so well with the tree was a model for all the animal architecture in the garden. The chicken coop looked similar, made of wood and disappearing into the environment. Nothing was in excess or everything was designed and yet seemed to belong to the environment. The garden had just the right amount of wild flowers in pockets and growing along the borders of the stone wall. The constraint and order gave peace of mind and tranquility. It was a garden that seemed wise, that it knew something about the good life in its lack of excess. It gave space for the animals, trees and flowers to grow without fighting for the attention of water, sunlight or room for growth. The work had been done so perfectly it now just looked pleasurable, this garden was tamed.
Rabbits were hopping freely outside of their cages, hopping past me. The gate was open and also the doors to the Villa. The entrance to my garden was locked. A woman passing by told me to come back at 5pm, that it might be open then but I couldn’t understand how that could be. It was around 4:30 at the time. I looked through the iron gates and tried telepathy with the cat inside to no avail. I took one photo and left. Researching the museum again now, it turns out it does open again at 5pm to 11pm during the summer.