Postcard from Queretaro, Mexico: Bouquet from a patio of Eden

Above, orchids blooming in a patio of La Casa de los Ladrillos in Santiago de Queretaro

The Secret Garden was what Mary called it when she was thinking of it. She liked the name, and she liked still more the feeling that when its beautiful old walls shut her in no one knew where she was. It seemed almost like being shut out of the world in some fairy place.”

Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden, 1911*

Offering a colorful bouquet in gratitude for the hospitality extended by our host last week in the historic center of Queretaro. Of course, we plucked these flowers virtually from his own garden filling all his patio space with plants that would rival those of any nursery. He has succeeded in creating a magical, soothing respite in the heart of city.

Ah, but those vicious needles of las coronas de espinas, or crowns of thorns, kept me on high alert as I carefully threaded my way back to the guestroom on post-Tequila, conversation-filled evenings. But it’s impossible to ignore the beauty of their blooms amongst the thorns.

So great to enjoy the company of an old friend amidst the paradise he created. Muchismas gracias para todo.

*My mother’s childhood copy of The Secret Garden sat on my bookshelf during elementary school. I pulled it and her copy of Anne of Green Gables out repeatedly to read while impatiently awaiting publication of the next Nancy Drew book.

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