Structures in gardens serve valuable functions. Done right, they also inspire emotions. When I was in my teens I had a teacher named Mrs. Mac who was also an avid gardener. One day, she asked if I would help build some stairs in her garden. Keen to be of assistance whenever I could, I said yes. So I ended up having one of my fist experiences using a dry mix mortar of sand and cement in equal amounts.
Working from Mrs. Mac’s vision, I built the stairs out of bluestone cobbles into the side of her garden. There were many layers, many courses of steps, that created the access she needed to go from one level to another. But more than that, those stairs would take her from one bit at the top, that was exposed, to where the base of the stair was hidden, so from the top you couldn't see the bottom because it curved around.
I think today, some 20 years on, those stairs are still there and they're working. The mortar and the stone made a sound structure. The curve, the reveal when you turned the corner at the base, gave it life. And the contrast between the dark, sturdy stone and the light, joy of discovery as you rounded the base still makes me smile to this day.
Music/Sound Design by Tom Cascino - 'Day Bird'
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