Wonder Moment: The Chairousel at the Chairy Orchard

Recently the Wonder Voyage Coordinators visited a folk art landmark in Denton, Texas. The “Chairy Orchard” is a unique little place with a quirky heart. In 2013, a couple of neighbors began collecting random old chairs and placing them in the vacant lot between their two homes. Today there are hundreds of chairs – some grouped in themed arrangements, and some just there as chairs. It is an enchanting place to sit and think and imagine.

My favorite grouping of chairs in the orchard was the “Chairousel,” or, as I thought of in my head, the Chairy -Go-Round. It is a collection of wooden rocking horses set in a circle just like a Merry-Go-Round. I found a rocking horse that was big enough for me, and I sat and rocked for several blissful minutes. 

As I rocked back and forth, I was reminded of both the carousels of my childhood and the carousels that I have seen around the world in my travels. I thought about how excited I used to get to ride the painted horses up and down with the lights and the music, and the laughter. I considered the faces of children I have seen as they drew near and readied themselves for a magical ride.

One of the things that struck me as I rocked and reminisced is that while the carousel goes up and down and round and round, it actually goes nowhere at all. You disembark in exactly the same place from which you began. And yet, the wonder of the carousel remains. Children line up to go up and down and round and round. Because wonder is everywhere. We don’t have to travel very far at all. We just need to have the open eyes and open hearts to experience and embrace it. 

Get out there and find your wonder…it changes everything.

After graduating with a dual degree in History and Sociology, Molly became a youth minister in the Episcopal Church. She joined the staff of WV in 2003. As Voyage Coordinator, she adds the nuts and bolts to our itineraries. She is dedicated to bringing the gospel to life through pilgrimage. As an encounter expert, Molly can find the story of God anywhere and everywhere.

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