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My Imaginary Botanical Garden

Recently Owen and I made a pretend Baby Chick Botanical Garden. Originally we weren’t even going to make a botanical garden; originally what we were doing was playing a game where I was a big fat baby chick and Owen was trying to make me be not so fat. First Owen made me play tetherball, which was “Exercise-Ball” in our game. Every time one of us won, I lost 75 calories. And Owen was trying to make me lose 775 calories. After I won about 5 times, Owen made me ride my bike which was sort of like an exercise bike. First I got on it, and I said, “You can’t make me do it!” and Owen prodded me with a little stick to try to make me ride. I swerved around so Owen couldn’t prod me and then I stalled out. Then Owen started catching up to me and prodding me and I drove around slowly. After a while, I said, “175 calories are all gone now!” And then Owen got a good idea. He picked a really sweet honey flower and ran away. I started chasing after him really fast to get the honey flower, while Owen called, “Try to get the honey flower!” After I came up the driveway after chasing after Owen, I announced that 275 calories were gone because I’d went around the house so fast! I started to catch up with Owen and then I jumped off my bike and snatched up the flower and ate it. Owen just laughed. Besides, it only gave me 50 calories. And after that, Owen told me to get off my bike and we played a little bit more of Exercise-Ball until I turned into a very good-working, not fat, strong baby chick. And then I started to lean down and eat some honey-flowers, but Owen said, “Hey, you can’t eat those!” So then I waited till Owen was looking away and doing something else, and I started to lean down to eat some honey flowers! And then Owen turned around and put the things he was collecting in a container, and he saw me just about to eat it. Owen couldn’t understand how to teach me not to eat sweet things, so I gave him some advice. I told him that he should tell me some good things to eat and tell me that I could eat the sweet things only sometimes, so Owen did that.

And then we did some other stuff, and this is how it wound up turning into a botanical garden. Owen and I were going up to the woodchip pile. All the toys and everything were jumbled in a big pile and there were tools laying around. I picked up the rake, and I got onto the red pool. I waved my rake in the air, and said, “It’s going to rain!” in my baby chick voice, and Owen started saying it too. The air was misty with a cool breeze with lots of dark, stormy cloud moving in. It really felt like it was going to rain, with trees rustling like they do when it’s about to rain. (Although it didn’t actually rain.) After scuttling around the red pool and chanting, “It’s going to rain! It’s going to rain!” Owen asked if he could be a baby chick too, and I said yes he could. Us two, the two baby chicks, liked it when it was going to rain, so we chanted it very happily! And then we organized the stuff up and we raked paths. To make it more like a botanical garden, I raked paths, and got bamboo, and put them in big buckets with rocks to support them. The next day I brought pot gardens and other little plants I had put in the other day. When Collin saw it, and I told him it was my botanical garden, he said something like, “A couple bamboo sticks and a lot of woodchips!” But the best part for me was how I imagined it!

Here’s what you’d see if you came to my Botanical Garden the way that I imagine it:

Let’s say you’re in a cart with a horse pulling it along. You’re going along a dirt road with streams running alongside it. You keep on going until you see a big mound of woodchips with a path going up it. You can hear the sound of really loud rushing water as you go up the woodchip mound. Once you’re almost at the top of the hill you are stopped by a monkey who tells you to pay one coin for admission, and he tells you to put your horse to one side of him, where all the other animals are, next to the hay. And he also points to a deep cave where you put your cart which has a path leading to it. There’s an arced wooden sign above you that says “Baby Chick Botanical Garden”. The sign is covered with moss and vines and is drippy with water–it’s always cool and breezy there, and there’s always a lot of fog because of the ponds and because the temperature’s always right for it.

You come up the path, and then you turn off to one side, and there’s a big pool with a path going all around it. (This is a pool for bathing in. All the animals and birds that live there drink and bathe in it.) You keep on rolling along the path, pulling your cart to the cave the monkey showed you, and when you look back on the path you see that there’s a old rock passageway in the air, with water rushing across it. It had vines dangling off it, and the water had been running in it constantly so it was really waterworn. It’s attached to the sign, with two wooden posts and the monkey’s stand helping hold it up. When you first came up, you heard really loud rushing water, but you couldn’t see it because the sign was hiding it.

When you get to the cave, you put your cart in there. It’s slightly dark, but there’s a couple of candles hanging from the ceiling, and there’s lots of other carts there, too. The cave is dim and echoey with the sound of water dripping and you can hear the huge rushing of water rushing over the cave. You walk out back onto the woodchip path, and you keep on walking for a little ways until you get to two other pools. There’s 3 pools: one for drinking out of, one for saving, and one for bathing in. And there’s a path that goes in between the pools into a grove of exotic fruit trees. So you keep on going, and you get to a fun slide. It’s a huge slide that goes very quick, with a tree growing up next to it. You climb up the fun slide and you look around.

To the north, you see a tall and pointy, crumbly rock, like a mountain except not as big, with water rushing down either side. One side of the water going down the mountain races off to the the rock passageway, flows over the cave, and splashes into both the drinking and saving pool. The other side of the water runs parallel to the stone wall that covers the whole Botanical Garden, and does a slight arc over the path, rushing off into the air, and then falls into the bathing pool with lots of splashing. You notice that there’s holes in the bottom of each pool and water going into them. (The holes in the bottom of each pool goes into a tube up into the crusty hill, and the water comes up either side, but you can’t see the tubes.) Next to the crumbly mountain, there’s a tool holder and two wheelbarrows that hold fertilizer water guns.

Now you slide down the fun slide, whizzing very fast, and land with a bump on woodchips. You walk along, the only way you can go, until you get to some pot gardens with some extraordinary flowers, and sunflowers and sundrops are growing up along the stone wall. The wall is like a castle wall except lower down–they’re all very big rocks, and it’s almost like they’re glued together. And you look up, and you realize you’re right next to the big crumbly mountain. And you follow the path along, until you get to the grove of trees, looking at all the weird kind of trees, with weird kinds of fruits you’ve never seen before. And you hear all sorts of weird birds that are very loud and echoey, and you see a hummingbird go to one of the blossoms on one of the trees. You come to a bi-i-ig tree that’s been grafted so that it has all the fruits you can possibly cram on it! It has a lot of green and red fruits, and it has lots of other fruits on it.

You continue along the path, heading south, and you come to a clearing, which is like a huge sandbox, with huge mounds of different kinds of soil. This is the place where the Botanical Garden stores all their manure and their fertilizer. You look to the corner, toward the northeast, and you see a shed and pygmy goats eating weeds that were pulled up. The people that take care of the Botanical Garden dump all their weeds where the goats are, and they eat them up, and when they digest them they turn it into manure.

That’s all the things that you’d see if you were in my Botanical Garden! In real true life, these were the things I used: For the trees that were in the garden, I put bamboo in a bucket and I put heavy rocks in a bucket to make sure they wouldn’t fall over. And for the ponds, I took kiddie pools and placed them in the places I wanted to. And our slide was for the fun slide at one end of it, and I brought up tools for the tool rack. And towards the sandbox there was bamboo growing up, and those were the grove of trees, and I pretended the sandbox was a mound of different manures, where goats were, just like I said before. And the funny thing about it was I actually made it on a woodchip pile! And I even got a tourist, her name was Cadie! (Really truly it was just Cadie, she came with a camera, but she wasn’t taking pictures of us, just of clouds.) And she and the other kids ran around the pool, which was the path around the bathing pond in my imaginary one, and slid down the fun slide and bonked her head on the tools because she was too tall! And she said, “You bonk your head on this!” and I said, “Not us shorties!”

I really like my Baby Chick Botanical Garden, and I had a lot of fun with it! The way I imagined it was really good! (I wish I could go to a real Botanical Garden sometime!)