The Most Beautiful Place on Earth

I visited Callaway Gardens on a perfect Georgia day. Warm. Cloudless. Soft breeze.

At the beginning, I wasn’t all that impressed. The place was scenic in a “seen it” sort of way. Roads meandering among wooded areas and around lakes. Golf course. Pastoral views. Then I reached the Overlook Azalea Garden, and oh, my!

Callaway Gardens calls the Overlook Azalea Trail the most beautiful place on earth, and although I would hesitate to agree — there are many spectacularly beautiful places all over the world and especially in the United States — the trail through the azalea garden is truly lovely. At times it seemed as if I’d wandered into an impressionist’s painting. Other times it seemed as if I’d turned a corner into a heavenly sent and heavenly scented eden.

I lucked out in that without planning it, my visit corresponded to the bloom season. Such beauty seems hard to fathom, but there it was, all laid out before me, as if the very earth were so glad I had come for a visit, it donned it’s loveliest raiment.

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(Pat Bertram is the author of the suspense novels Light Bringer, More Deaths Than One, A Spark of Heavenly Fire, and Daughter Am I. Bertram is also the author of Grief: The Great Yearning, “an exquisite book, wrenching to read, and at the same time full of profound truths.”)

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