If You Want Me I’ll Be Hiding in the Palapa Next to the Giant Head

A giant Head in the garden surrounded by items with price tags. Weirdness abounds.

In the “everything has a price including, it would appear, my head” department, I went over to the water gardens for some shooting this weekend. Now, I love the water gardens, don’t get me wrong. And, when I say, “love,” I mean like I would marry the water gardens if you know they were male and it was legal in this state. Setting my amorous feelings aside for the moment, the water gardens are in fact a magical place. There’s something quite special about going there, especially on a Sunday afternoon when it’s not too crowded, and just taking in the sights, sounds, and smells of the place. It’s like an afternoon meditation, really that is. I can’t stress how much I really do love the place, jokes about weddings and whatnot aside. Now, while I do love the place, it is not entirely without it’s, shall we say, “quirks.” One of the “quirks” I’m talking about here, actually somewhat of a endearing quality if you will but still quirky nonetheless, is the propensity for one to happen across giant heads. Yes, I said giant heads. And I do really mean giant heads in the true form of the word. (The one you see pictured here, while still a bit large, is really only medium sized compared to some of the giant ones they tuck into the bushes at this place.)

OK, I’m going to just come out and say it. While I love, love, love the water gardens, it’s a bit weird walking around this beautiful, magical, meditative place all the while freaking out about maybe, just maybe, backing into some kind of mutant giant British Isle-like green man face. It’s a bit freaky if I’m being honest. This week was no exception. It started out innocent enough. It was cloudy all day on Saturday and so I got the idea to head on over there (excuse the pun.) Since it was cloudy, I thought the crowds might not be about, seeing as most folks don’t want to plod through a garden center in the rain and all. The weatherman did call for clouds on Sunday, clouds but not rain, so I thought I might chance it. As luck would have it, the rain mostly held off and I did get some great shooting in (more on this to come) and it was mostly empty. Chalk one up for a great experience there.

I invited my friend Kathy to join me and she met up with me there. We were both happy to be out shooting a bit and enjoying the rather flat, soft light. It’s a bit late in the season for the water flowers but there are still some up and the soft light makes for great colors. At one point, it started to rain a bit. They have a lot of garden structures there, including a giant palapa with a fake parrot and some stools tucked away inside of it. When it started to rain some, we decided to duck into the palapa to get out of the rain. I pulled up a stool and grabbed a seat and that’s when I noticed it. Off to the side, near (really next to) the palapa was this giant head. It was very British Isles “Green Man” like in appearance, almost a bit freaky, and rather large. It’s not everyday you bump into a giant head like this one. I found myself saying to Kathy, “that’s a really cool but rather freaky giant head over there, next to our palapa.” If you are ever thinking about ducking into a palapa to get out of the rain, I have to recommend you check it out for giant heads first because, you know, this is not something you really want to surprise you after you get settled in, comfortable, and all. Just a pro tip there, from me to you.

An interesting thing about the freaky giant heads is that they are, in fact, for sale. I checked the price on the giant one that was next to our palapa. While it was a wonderful head (it was probably my favorite of the bunch) it was really rather large. I tried to decide if I could move it by myself, if it would fit into my car or not, and the only answer I could come up with was, “nope. Not a chance.” So, while I love, love, loved the head, I had to pass (it was $469 bucks in case you are wondering which, you know, is a lot but not really. I mean, I guess I don’t really know the going rate for giant heads but, just a hunch here, I think it’s probably more than that at most other garden centers. Maybe. Heck, I don’t know, it’s a big head man, what do you want from me, eh? How can you even begin to put a price on such a thing?)

So, there you have it. Giant heads abound, faces everywhere. Green men hiding in the bushes. And, you know, ladies too, as some of the faces are female. I guess I’d have to say the morale of this story is that, why, you never know what you might find next to your palapa. Like a good boy scout, you should always be prepared for just about anything. Either that or, you know, maybe next time pack an umbrella.

Until next time…

PS In case you’re wondering, no, this is not the giant head in question although this is a big head, it’s not as giant as the giant one. This one was special on account of all of the price tags. Taken with the Canon 5DS and the 100mm macro lens. F8, be there, and watch out for the dude in the forest, man!

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