Posted by Cara I.
After the informative, intense training this spring, it was delightful to be declared a Unit 86
docent. It was also stressful, because that meant
actually leading tours was next – to help with that stressor, the members of
the ‘Class of 2013’ were encouraged to meet with mentors and shadow
veteran guides as we developed our own tours. Seattle Japanese Garden
So, I talked a lot with my mentor and shadowed tours; like other novitiates, I also brought friends to the Garden and practiced explaining its elements, noting structures, and stopping at spots where those kind friends could enjoy the scenery. It was a pleasure as well to stroll through the Garden with a fellow new guide, a plant expert, who taught me more about its collection of flora.
As the azalea and rhododendron (which I learned belong to the same genus) started to blossom, filling the Garden with color, I realized it was time to ‘just do it’; since May, I’ve led two public tours, including one in which we were all surprised by a young man in the group who stopped us at the highest point of the Garden, faced his girlfriend, reached into his pocket…, pulled out a ring…, got down on one knee… and proposed to her! She accepted! The private tour groups I’ve guided have been of school children, and I had so much fun with them – I hope they had fun, too!!
|Photo taken after a garden photography |
presentation by David Cobb
I am continually grateful for the generosity of the employees at the SJG and senior guides, especially my very capable mentor, who so willingly offer ideas to help me develop tours. It’s now summer – a particularly green time in the Garden – and I am also enjoying other opportunities that being a Unit 86 volunteer brings, like making new friends, helping tend the garden, attending continuing education activities, and helping at special events such as the Tanabata event this Sunday.
Becoming a contributor to this blog is another opportunity I am already appreciating, and I look forward to posting entries from time to time, from my ‘new guide’ point of view!