Every city has its hidden gems – one of Savannah’s is an alley tucked away from the mainstream touristy routes. Just off Abercorn Street and around the corner from Colonial Park Cemetery lies a magical place that its residents find a cool breeze after work. Sheer intoxication of fragrance bodes relaxation amongst the floral overload that somehow absorbs the troubles of the busy day which are just past either entrance to the alley. Never truly having the harsh light of day exposing its contents to hot Savannah, the alley envelopes those lucky few who find her in a refreshing calm most of the day.
Ferns, flower pots, and tropical leaf plants almost hide the pale blue seats, tables and even the swinging bench that bid on-lookers a closer, deeper investigation. Pails containing an assortment of bottled “aahhh!” are within reach of the nearest table shaded by another fern plant. Hanging in artistic fashion, pane-less window frames allow seekers a clear view into a glimpse of an urban Eden not placed here by God but by a lovely Savannah transplant affectionately named “Pinky”. She lovingly tendsthe garden, introducing weary trespassers to her blissful corner of Savannah.
What caught my attention as I passed the familiar respot on my way to a favorite coffee spot that morning was the symbol of our nation’s strength and freedom draped splendidly from the flowering vine and plant-laden steel catwalks of the ajoining apartment complexes which share the alley. I had to stop as I did a double take before being drawn again to the oasis of rest I had shared with close friends and my soulmate. Morning sun rays pierced the flag’s woven polyester and nylon threads that reminded me soberly of the sacrifice given by brave men and women. Yet that very day other Americans effortlessly, thoughtlessly, irreverently carried out their plans of backyard fun, meat-laden grilling, beer drinking and beach frolicking in the name of “Happy Memorial Day!” Happiness not earned nor in memory given to those fallen.
Yeah, it gets my goat! But I know true service and the burden it lays upon the families of those who lost loved ones and brothers-in-arms. As I pointed my camera upward taking the picture, I thanked God and Pinky for my Memorial Alley Garden.