Brooklyn Botanic Gardens

New York has not one but at least fifteen botanical gardens! I spent a good chunk of the day at the trendy Brooklyn Botanic Gardens.

The Gardens were partly closed for a large expansion that was in progress. Despite that, there was still a lot to see. I ambled around.

I spotted a large turtle chilling out. The floral highlights were the Japanese Hill-and-Pond Garden, the Rose Garden, and the Shakespeare Garden. The last has about 80 plants mentioned in Shakespeare’s plays. Many were herbs, which I enjoyed sniffing, especially the lemon basil!

Since I went on a weekday, it was incredibly peaceful. There was just the odd school trip, including one from India, and a wedding photoshoot; the Indian children were dressed as immaculately as they do in India.

At the visitor centre, I got talking to a volunteer. He was a kind and gentle man, who, as a person of colour, had experienced a lot in life. We had a thought-provoking conversation about American history, society, and politics. I’ve been constantly surprised at how many engaging people I’ve met. The stereotype of Americans doesn’t do justice to the reality. But that may reflect the places I went to!

On the Joe Rogan podcast, he once asked someone, “What percentage of Americans are idiots?” The reply from his guest was one percent. Joe Rogan did the maths: “That means there are three million idiots in this country!”

Occasionally, I remember that quote when I’m on the internet looking at social media. Even if the world were overwhelmingly good, just a tiny percentage can make it seem otherwise.

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