“Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.”
There is a bike path near my house that meanders through several suburbs all the way to the river. As I walked this path recently I passed a number of really cool playgrounds. Each had more than the regular swings and slides. These playgrounds had really neat and unique play equipment that I imagine would be great fun for kids.
These playgrounds for kids got me thinking. Wouldn’t it be interesting if, as adults, we could design our own little space for fun, relaxation and adventure. What would we include? I chuckled to myself realising they could look very different for each of us, even different for individuals on different days, should we have the opportunity to be the architects of our dreams.
This week, for me, my little space would include lots of relaxation and soulfilling adventure. Now, I’m going to use a good deal of imagination here, because that’s what kids do in playgrounds, right? Use their imaginations. My playground would consist of five hut like gazebos arranged in a pentagon around a central hut that acts as a hub, if you will. Reflexology paths, lined with aromatic herbs, radiate from the hub to the other huts. This central hut is, of course, a tea hut. It boasts every type of tea imaginable; chai, oolong, gunpowder green, herbal teas, you name it it’s there with an equally abundant collection of teapots and tea cups for any mood or occasion.
I could begin my adventure with a soothing cup of High Mountain Vietnamese Oolong and then take the path that leads to the massage hut where I could indulge in Thai foot massage, Indian head massage and Kahuna massage. Once rejuvenated, refreshed and relaxed I would wander back to the hub for a rich and creamy pot of creme brûlée tea . Next, I’d head out to the art gazebo where I could escape into and create with paints, collage, beading, and clay.
Thinking about what play means to me, I’d have to have a place for a tight rope and a trapeze swing. But a trapeze wouldn’t fit in a gazebo you say. Such a trifling matter. When employing imagination, anything is possible. Gilbert Chestrson also believed “there are no rules of architecture for a castle in the clouds.”
Giving free rein to my imagination (as I wandered through a tree lined park on my Sunday morning walk) I daydreamed of having a hut with a magic door that would transport me to anywhere in the world. I could visit the Uffizi Gallery and sate myself on gorgeous art, then wander up the spiritual haven of the Tor in Glastonbury, followed by a wander around the standing stones in Avebury, or the quiet moors in Scotland. I wouldn’t mind dropping into the little church of San Damiano, in Assisi, for mass in Italian or for a seafood lunch in Honfleur. On my return, and after supping a dandelion tea, I’d head off to the remaining hut, for a soak in a warm mud pool finished off with a float in a float tank.
Now wouldn’t that be grand? A cluster little white wooden gazebos where I could indulge, play and escape. I know it is just plain silly (and many of you will be wondering what the hell I was thinking posting this tripe) but that’s half the fun and my. How often do we let ourselves, as adults, just dream silly dreams? How often do we play and use our imaginations? Where’s the harm in having fun? Sometimes time and finances don’t allow us to truly escape but a little daydreaming is as good as a holiday. Your brain can’t tell the difference between a thought and reality. Needless to say my Sunday morning walk was one of the most relaxing and exhilarating walks I’ve had in a long time. I might actually pull the paintbrushes out this week and pop off for a foot rub. Woo hoo. See what letting your imagination run wild can trigger.
Fire up your imagination and start daydreaming. What would your playground include?