As autumn draws near, can there be anything more beautiful than Japanese maples bringing colour and balance to the calm contemplative harmony of a Japanese garden?
In case you think it’s all doom, gloom and complaints in my life at the moment, there are the occasional perfect autumn days to rejoice every little cockle and mussel of my heart. There are few things more beautiful than an English garden, but perhaps one with artworks to discover and a son with a map determined to see every single one of them (and exclaim at the prices) is the best garden of all!
Savill Garden is an enclosed, well-tended part of Windsor Great Park, but not that easy to find even with a GPS. It’s considered one of the finest ornamental gardens in England, is part of the Crown Estate, and until 31st October it hosts an exhibition of 61 sculptures.
Holidays are all about catching up with friends over dinner and drinks, whilst also having plenty of space to read on your own. So here are some villas that I would like to share with my nearest and dearest…
In my dream world, I would be able to work on a shady patio, drinking in the fresh air, rejoicing in the cheerful chirp of birds and friendly breezes playing with my hair. In the real world, I get attacked by insects, cannot bear the heat, have my hair buffeted around by angry winds and fail to read anything with the glare on my screen. But this is all about dreaming, isn’t it?
So, with so much work coming up over the next few weeks that I’ll be mostly missing in action again, here are some places I will be working from (in my mind).
Where do you like to work – in your dreams? And in real life?
Who wants to spend time inside, when there are such pools, patios and views beckoning? In this hot weather, however, don’t forget your sunscreen, floppy hats and books to cover your faces (tablets are just not the same thing…).
The snow isn’t here yet, it’s just miserable and grey. So let’s escape into summer with these inspiring pictures of gardens, terraces and patios.
Or maybe we should contemplate moving to the Southern Hemisphere. I once knew a university professor who was teaching in Brazil September to February, London March to June and spending the summers in Italy…
We wander in a daze, through minarets of clay,
alabaster arches of thousand one more dreams.
We get lost in mazes, guided only by
children’s laughter and gasps of enchantment.
Round-mopped flowerheads beckon us to stroke them.
Birdsong fills the cool shade under the chestnut tree.
Water in every form bustles, trickles, dribbles, laps –
Each fountain a family member,
each square of cement path a pebble-enscribed love-letter.
disparate elements reclaimed from Morocco, Java, Spain,
brought together with nothing but bare hands and humour.
It started out as child’s play and became a family’s history,
hands in soil for decades, shared sighs, always a surprise,
glimmer of a pool around the corner, where
copper filigree meets bulbous earthen pumpkins.
Day after day they built one more terrace,
seeded another flowerbed,
mosaics of azure tinged with moss, gold shredded with scarlet.
Thirst quenched, a little silenced,
we leave here hand in hand.
These magnificent gardens that I discovered earlier this year just outside Annecy in France – a source of inspiration and delight. For Gabriella’s brilliant initial hosting prompt about travel writing over at dVerse Poets Pub.