Many of the pleasures of gardening are direct and overt, and others just lurk beyond grasp-ability. Some are concrete, some just suggested or hinted at.
Benches and garden seats, for instance, are about 90% suggestion and 10% realization. Hardly any gardeners I know give themselves time to sit, but there’s something about a well-placed chair or bench that is powerful just in its suggestion that you could sit, or to remind you of a time when perhaps you did sit there. It’s like you can get a proportion of the benefit of the relaxation just by implying it.
Last time I was in The Music Garden, Toronto, I stumbled across these tiny tea-cups, perched on boulders.
The effect was incredible. Not only was their fragility exaggerated by contrast with the boulder, they suggested some recent event which I would have loved to be at. They looked like they’d been part of some installation, as if stuck down. But no, they were loose. I wondered if they were the residue of some elaborate tea ceremony, or perhaps just of a picnic, and that the participants had just wandered off in a romantic stupor. Whatever it was, I wished I’d been there.
And they left me gagging for a cup of tea.