Nieces and Brinckas

Once upon a Saturday, we decided to take a journey out to a magical place called Brincka-Cross Gardens. This is a beautiful garden nestled in an area of northwest Indiana. It was a home and gardens once owned by a couple of fabulous men who poured their heart and lives into creating a beautiful space. Upon their deaths, the home and gardens were gifted to the parks department and are now a public park one can walk through and follow the forested paths they laid out.

The magnolia trees were in full bloom as we pulled into our parking space. For this adventure, we invited my niece and her mom (who is actually my cousin) to come along with us. My niece is an old soul who loves beautiful things and especially loves flowers so we knew she would be enchanted with Brincka-Cross. As we tumbled from the car, her face full of delight and awe, we knew we were correct.

The first question to spill from her inquisitive mind was, “What is a Brincka?” From that one little question flowed an hour long tryst full of imagination and play. Her mother and I being the trickster we often are told her it was a type of monster that lived only in this park. As we continued down the path, we all let our imaginations run wild as we imagined what these Brinckas looked like, did, ate, and most importantly how to defeat them.

Our laughter echoed through the woods as we kept dreaming and storytelling. When we came upon a magical looking place, I informed my niece that this was the land of fairies and the Brinckas could not cross their boundaries (much like the realm of Elves in Lord of the Rings) and so we would be safe there. She played along but rather quickly decided that it was time to be brave and take on the Brinckas herself.

She found a large stick that now became her Brincka vanquishing sword. As my Mother and I took one path, we could hear my niece and her mother on the other path yelling and “fighting” off those darned Brinckas! As we met up again I told my niece that she was being extremely brave and then I told her to strike her fiercest warrior pose to show us how tough she was at fighting those Brinckas.

We adults had reached the end of our imaginations for the time being but we let her continue on with her ideas. As we were the only occupants of the garden, we let her run and swing her Brincka sword. In that moment, I sat on a bench and gazed at the peacefulness the gardens provided. The ivy covered barn intrigued me and I wondered what it would be like to host a grand party there.

Brincka-Cross Gardens is a magical, hidden gem. Well, magical if you want it to be, and we certainly did. It is a peaceful place where one can be surrounded by trees, flowers, and quiet. The place needs some love and I have all kinds of new found love for it. When you visit, take your time to walk the paths (they aren’t very long). Bask in the peaceful sounds of the birds chirping and feast your eyes on the lush vegetation and flowers to be found there. Just make sure you watch out for those Brinckas!



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