Wednesday, 22 June 2011

On a bench in Regent's Park the other day, beside a bed of peachy roses, I spotted this plaque to Ena, to mark her 99th birthday, who was
Our model for kindness, generosity and joie de vivre.
And I thought what a lovely way to be remembered.
I always stop to read the benches. The best ones are like little love stories.
I was wondering how my own life might be summed up on a bench. So I had to laugh when I saw this one in a highly desirable spot by swags of mauve roses.
Why walk when you can sit?
My philosophy exactly. Although - given their dismissive attitude to exercise - it didn't say whether the couple remembered on the bench achieved 99th birthdays.

The park was scented with lime blossom after the rain. And because I had to take a different way out than my usual route - they were setting up stalls for a festival - I discovered the entrance to an enchanting hidden garden that must be one of London's best-kept secrets because I never knew it was there.
There was nobody there after the rain except me, another lady who was planning to return with her paints and a young gardener ...
I pressed a sprig of thyme and smelled it on my fingers all the way home.

9 comments:

Toffeeapple said...

We have a Peace Pagoda here and all around the area are remembrances of people who have passed on, though not always on benches, some are very inventive.

What excitement, will you be telling us more about the secret garden?

mary said...

I don't know much about it, Toffeeapple, but I googled it when I got home and the house apparently belongs to the Sultan of Brunei ... and I did wonder where he was that afternoon and why he wasn't out there enjoying his lilies.
It's such a beautiful hideaway, full of lilies and roses and benches tucked away in alcoves. Of course, for all I know it's full of visitors on a sunny afternoon and it isn't a secret at all - although I doubt it, because the entrance would be very easy to miss.
And if Kristina is reading this, I should add that it's very near the allotment garden - where there's a very chic scarecrow. I know she'll want one!

bookssnob said...

What a beautiful plaque! I love plaques on benches but sometimes they make me cry...it's sad to think that the people aren't there to enjoy the view they so loved any more.

That garden is beautiful! Never knew it existed. Why was the Sultan of Brunei allowed to buy it I wonder?! It should be open to the public and have a wonderful cafe in it or something.

kristina said...

Oh must take G to see the scarecrow! K x

mary said...

I should think it's probably leased from the Crown estates, Rachel. I was pleased to be able to go into the garden, so I won't begrudge him the house ... there's plenty of cafés in the park, so you won't go hungry for cake!
The scarecrow was smarter than me, Kristina. And there were some pretty little mini-scarecrows, too - more like corn dollies. One of those days when I really needed a camera. (It's not the photography bit that intimidates - though I'm rubbish at it - but I haven't a clue how to get the pictures onto the blog! Some day!)

kristina said...

Oooh no prob getting the pictures loaded.

Just click on the Add Image icon (second from the right at the top of the box you're typing your text into).

Then click on Choose File and select your first picture. I often put the pictures I'm adding in a folder on my desktop to make them easy to find and add at this stage, then file them afterwards.

Then when you've added all your pictures, click 'Upload Image' and let Blogger do the rest!

K x

mary said...

I need a digital camera first, Kristina! If I get one maybe it will all fall into place.
But thanks for the tutorial!

Martha said...

That's an interesting thought -- love walking through parks!

mary said...

Hi Martha, nice to have a visitor from Kansas. I've been reading your holiday posts - you put me to shame, you've been to places I've never been to.