People, what rock have I been hiding under? Yesterday I went for the first time ever to the Masonic Cemetery on 25th and University. It is, I think, the most beautiful public garden in all of Eugene. Indian plum and thimbleberries grow next to paths lined with wild grasses, columbines, oregon grape, and the sweet cicely (whose skinny seedheads provided some lovely anise flavored trailside refreshment). Mix in gravestones in all stages of decomposition, including some shockingly current ones (like apparently you can still be buried there should you choose to purchase a plot), a crazy crypt or two, plastic flowers, american flags (we are after all just days past Memorial Day), and the best collection of heritage roses I have ever smelled (we are also right on the downside of the peak of rose season) and you'll have some idea of the beauty you might encounter there. The roses deserve a whole story of their own. And, despite the fact that people are buried there and there's lots of trails and human activity, the place has a slightly wild and untouched feeling because they have a pretty interesting no mow policy which you can read about here. I got to the top and a huge squall hit complete with thunder and lightning. It poured. I had the whole place to myself. It was divine. This is all by way of saying, I want to encourage all of us to get out to places we've never been to before. And all the better if it's something you might go past all the time but have never really checked out. Because beauty hides in the most obvious of places.
photo lifted from Eugene Masonic Cemetery website.