If you come here to see the ordinary London photos, Big Ben, Westminster Cathedral, Tower Bridge and so on, sorry, you've come to the wrong place. But if you want to walk with me to new places (well, at least new to me), I am pleased to take you along. I do not want to talk all the time though. I need space for quiet, for solitude, for reflections. I need to hear the leaves drinking water, the leaves to drop. I will be more than happy to do it together with you though. And from time to time we can share thoughts, chat, smile together, talk together.
But you will need good walking shoes. When I start I can keep on for hours. Especially in a place like Kew Gardens where there were new rooms of paradise around every corner.
I have wanted to visit Kew Gardens for years. I always tend to find the botanical gardens in the cities I visit, Prague, Rome, Copenhagen, Padova, Trondhaim always Trondheim, but somehow I've never made it to Kew Gardens.
Saturday night I decided Sunday would be The Day, and I went to bed hoping that the weather would be good enough for my hours of walking. So when I woke up Sunday morning to a winter sun shining, my whole soul smiled. Yes, Kew Gardens, here I come!
I wanted to see it all, starting with the Palm House and the nursery where a special orchid exhibition was taking place to celebrate Kew's 250th birthday. Orchids showing of their beauty in a water mirror!
I kept on walking, and some time during the day I found myself in the remote end of the garden where Queen Charlotte's cottage is situated. Closed in winter and most of summer as well, but surrounded by thousands of snowdrops.
Why is it that I like snowdrops so much more than snowflakes?
When I was in India last autumn, Carolyn opened her rich bookshelves for me, and the first book I read during my stay, was a biograpy about Marianne North, the artist and worldtraveller who painted these amazing flowers and plants from her trips, and who built a special gallery at Kew for her paintings. Visiting the gallery was on top of my list, but fate had more lemons ready for me. The gallery is closed this winter due to renovation. I was able the see a few of Marianne's paintings in another gallery, but...... Well, I did not let it destroy my day. There were too much to see and enjoy.
Leaving the Gardens, late in the afternoon, just before closing time, I had afternoon tea in this charming restaurant, The Kew Greenhouse. A perfect place for eating. A perfect place for writing my diary.
The tube back to London, with tired, oh so tired feet, rich oh so rich with memories.