Anne Wingate, Ph.D.
“Unique” is an overworked word, but I apply it without hesitation to Gilgal Sculpture Garden. Wikipedia cannot do this place justice.
When you come to Salt Lake City do not fail to visit Gilgal. It is tucked away at 749 East 500 South. Bring your camera. Bring your children.
In 1984 I was living near Galveston. After first contact—“mail order bride” through Mensa—I told T that Egyptology was among my lifelong passions.
“Egyptology?” thought he. “She isn’t ready for this!”
He promptly sent me a photograph of the Joseph Smith Sphinx. He lived only a few blocks away from it.
Have you ever heard of such a thing?
Now, I won’t pretend that I came to Salt Lake City only to meet the Sphinx. But it was the very first sight I was shown by my respectful guide.
My tenth Deb Ralston novel, Inherited Murder (1994), sets Gilgal as the place where the deed was done. (Of thirteen novels in the series, eleven are set in Texas.) Inherited Murder was translated into German.¹
Early in our marriage T and I “adopted” the Joseph Smith Sphinx.
We took snapshots of our offspring and stepspring every year or so until they moved away and developed their own interests … which did not include highly unconventional artworks of faith. The tradition T and I had hopes of launching fizzled out.
T and I have been married now for twenty-eight years. Twenty-four years have passed since our graduations and the launching of our principal firm.
So, we pose artfully—how else? where else?—beside our pet rock.
Amber in all its colors is my signature gem. Over many years T has given me amber pendants, mostly small, set in silver, no two alike. He gave the large heart to his mother, from whom I inherited it.
China looms large in T’s intellectual life, so his signature gem could only be jade (which has two families). His ring holds “the stone of heaven”: imperial green jadeite. I gave it to him for our twentieth anniversary. It is described in his novels.
The cabochon fills a (truly) golden rectangle (16:10). That ratio (phi) is as famous as every circle’s 22:7 (pi).
His cuff links—my gift for our twenty-fifth anniversary—are gold-circled domes of red nephrite. A gold-chained ball of “spinach” nephrite secures his necktie.
Woolen neckties last longer than the silken and are usually cheaper. He has at least a dozen.² This one is in the registered tartan of the Utah Centennial (1996).
My Yankee sets his own style and much of mine. He awarded himself a Stetson for elevated moods and occasions.
1 See Novels and Nonfiction on website.
2 In our Portraits (2007), he displays his favorite:
Caledonia, a generic. Notice also his ring
and my amber necklace.