Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Good Parking

                                   
                                         The Kyoto Garden, Holland Park.


Two days in London, and hardly a shop in sight (well, only for basic foodstuffs).
Two days of wonderful greenery, magnificent gardens, a spectacular river trip, and a brief skirmish with the paparazzi because we had forgotten that Her Majesty was due at Westminster at the same time as us.
This is parking in London at its very best. In glorious sunshine as well.

I was visiting my son, who lives very near to Hyde Park, one of the many Royal Parks in central London.
We walked, admiring wonderful trees and shrubs, through the park to Holland Park, which is not Royal, but might as well be by virtue of its surrounding wealth. It's in the Royal Borough, anyway.
How enjoyable to be in a great city and to walk, by way of leafy lanes and exquisite small streets, from one magnificent open space to another.
How enjoyable to eat lunch out of doors in Holland Park while a rehearsal for the current opera is taking place a few feet away.
And then to wander along to the Kyoto Garden with its high waterfalls, rocks and traditional Japanese planting, a gift from the Kyoto Chamber of Commerce in 1991.
Admittedly the sunshine helps a lot.
As does the time of year.
As does the company.

The next day we moved up a notch in scale and went upstream, up the Thames to the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew, inadvertently arriving at Westminster just ahead of Her Majesty and Entourage, but still managing to get through the crowds and to the boat at Westminster Pier.



Here is the iconic view, just before we met the paparazzi: Westminster Abbey, the clock face of Big Ben, and, just to the left, the London Eye. And a big red bus.

London, sparkling in the sunshine, green and fresh and beautiful.
The Queen out for the morning too, and my son, knowing how to give his old Mum a good time. I hope Prince Charles can do as well, but I know he couldn't do better!

16 comments:

Zhoen said...

Miss the Fenway and the Riverway, and the bit of wildness.

marigold jam said...

I love London don't you?! Especially the green parks in the sunshine but also the history and everything else too. Soi glad you son gave you a good time.

Leslee said...

Wow, what a beautiful sight the Kyoto Gardens are! I was in London only once, many years ago, in late October. It was actually warm for the season, or so we were told, and rather sunny in Hyde Park. We had a cup of tea in a paper cup, I remember. Anyway, you and the Queen had good timing! And it appears a good time as well.

Molly said...

Sounds lovely! Glad to hear summer has finally arrived over there....

Elephant's Child said...

Kyoto Gardens look stunning.

I wonder whether the Queen is able to enjoy the 'simple pleasures'. I hope so - and am glad that you had such a good time.

Relatively Retiring said...

Zhoen, Marigold, Leslee, Molly and E.C.: thank you for your comments. London has so much more to offer than shopping.
There is another beautiful Japanese garden in Kew Gardens, and probably the Queen has one of her own!

Jee said...

I've always loved London in late spring - the only thing I regret about moving here is that I can no longer hop on a train and be in Victoria in 15 minutes (not that I can hop on a train to anywhere at present, but you know what I mean!).

Relatively Retiring said...

Jee: Yes, but it's still a good service - almost door-to-door for me even if it takes two and a half hours!

Jenny Woolf said...

So glad you had a lovely time! People say London's glory is its parks, and I really think that is true. We are lucky to have several parks near where we live in London.

And your son sounds wonderful!

Relatively Retiring said...

Jenny: I guess you'll be exploring lots of gardens in squares this weekend? Yes, adult sons are wonderful.

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