Tag Archives: camden

Travel Tuesday – London Gardens 2010

I’m back! Sorry I wasn’t back yesterday as promised but computer issues ate up most of the day.

So you may have been wondering where I’ve been. Well, hubby and I had been planning this trip for some time and we cashed in all our frequent flyer and hotel miles and headed off to London for a variety of reasons.

We visited our best friend in London and I got great inspiration for new stories and research one in particular.

We had a wonderful time and the break from legal and writing work did me a world of good. After feeling a wealth of frustration over a number of projects in the last few months, all the new sights, sounds and foods revived my flagging creativity.

I hope the sights and info will inspire you as well as over the next few months Tip Tuesdays become Travel Tuesdays as I share some of the 600+ photos that I took all over London and nearby environs.

Today’s photographs are from some of the parks in London as well as the gardens in the area. The Brits love their gardens and it shows in the neatly manicured plots in front of many of the homes. In particular, the camelias caught my eye as they were in full bloom in an assortment of colors. I’ve always wanted to plant a camelia, but NJ is just too cold. Surprisingly, London which is far more North of NJ, has more temperate weather and because of this palm trees, camelias and other plants seem to thrive there.

The weather during our visit was a little drizzly, but not cold which made it just fine for the long walks we took through the various neighborhoods and parks. We even had two beautiful sunny and warm days and when that happened everyone seem to come out of their homes and offices and head to the nearest greens.

The photos in this collection are of three different parks:

St. James Park is located directly behind 10 Downing Street and Whitehall Chapel and in front of Buckingham Palace. It is a lovely park with a lake in the middle of it. Lush lawns, trees and flowers were all over and since this park was close to offices, Parliament, etc. it was mobbed when the sun came out.

Regents Park was right near our hotel in the Camden area of London. It’s also right next to the London Zoo or ZedSL as they call it (ZSL in American Speak). Even bigger than St. James, Regents likewise had lovely gardens and an immense lake filled with an assortment of very interesting water fowl.

Finally, St. John’s Wood Church Grounds was a smaller park along the route to the Tube (aka the subway). We passed by the park several times as they had closed our Tube line for servicing during their “bank holiday” (aka public holiday) over the Easter weekend. Take a moment to notice the very old tombstones scattered in the park and buried beneath the flowering camelias. It was rather creepy to walk past them at night, but it got my writer’s mind going about what might happen in such a place in the dark!

We spent over a week in London and also did a daytrip to Stonehenge and Bath, so look for tons more photos in the coming weeks as well as some video.

I hope you enjoy!

If you can’t see the slideshow below, you can click on this link to see the London Gardens 2010 photos!
http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2055743&id=1130005412&l=7d26d54995

Wicked Wednesday – Behind the Scenes: The Pine Barrens

sinscoversmallOne of our last Wicked Wednesdays was a Behind the Scenes look at Bradley Beach where our hero, Mick Carrera, has his home in my November paranormal romantic suspense release, SINS OF THE FLESH.

This time I’m going to give you a little Behind the Scenes look at another pivotal location in the novel — The Pine Barrens in New Jersey, also known as the Pinelands. Also known as the supposed home of the Jersey Devil.

The Pine Barrens is an enormous area of coastal plain, over 1 million acres large in South Jersey. It contains one of the state’s largest water aquifers and is both a National Reserve and a United Nations International Biosphere Reserve.
Lake Atsion in the New Jersey Pine Barrens. Taken by User:Mwanner, 9 September, 2005 Used under GNU  Documentation License

Because of its size and location close to the Jersey Shore and Camden, not to mention its protected status, it became the perfect place for me to locate the buildings for Wardwell Laboratories, the company that is supposed to provide Caterina Shaw, our heroine, with her gene therapy. The Wardwell buildings are right on the edges of one of the Pine Barrens’ non-developed areas and because of that, there are several scenes which take place in the woods nearby.

Today’s Wicked Wednesday is about Mick’s first visit to the Wardwell offices and a meeting with one of the company’s founders.

Chapter 1

Mick Carrera understood what kind of man he was.

Ruthless.

Determined.

Skilled in the art of killing.

People came to him when no one else could handle their problems because Mick either solved them or eliminated them — if Mick thought elimination was justified. Some scruples remained buried in his soul, a secret he closely guarded. In his line of work, having scruples equated to weakness.

Dr. Raymond Edwards had presented him with the kind of job that possibly ended with elimination, although Edwards hadn’t come right out and said so during their short telephone conversation. The doctor had skirted around the subject with the skill of a ballroom dancer, insisting time and time again that all he required were the services of a security specialist to assist with a problem at their facility.

Mick’s initial misgivings made him wonder why he had even come to the doctor’s office for this additional discussion. His typical clientele preferred meeting places that were much less visible, but then again, maybe such transparency meant that the doctor had been truthful about the nature of this assignment.

He scoped out the office as he entered, taking note of the fact that there was only one entrance in and out. Not good in case of the need for a quick escape. As he passed a credenza located beneath a wall filled with diplomas, framed news articles and photos, he noticed a small bronze statue of a horse mounted on a heavy marble base.

The size and weight of the statue would make it a handy weapon for either cracking open a man’s skull or breaking through the plate glass windows which lined one long wall of the office. The clear windows were now darkening, the color becoming as deep and dense as squid ink and likely for the same reason – concealment.

Mick had noticed all the high tech security on his way through the entrance of the building. He had expected it even while worrying about it. He knew his image would end up saved on a hard drive somewhere from the assorted cameras throughout the offices, but if Dr. Edwards was on the up and up, this was one job that was too good to not consider.

“I thought you might like some privacy,” the man behind the desk said as he rose and offered his hand.

“Dr. Raymond Edwards,” the man said.

Mick shook his hand and with a nod said, “Mick Carrera.” As Mick sat, he caught a glimpse of another security camera behind the desk, aimed directly at his chair. When Edwards tracked his gaze, he said, “Don’t worry, Mr. Carrera. I’ll make sure all traces of you are erased from our systems.”

“I appreciate your understanding,” he said, even while wondering again why a supposedly distinguished scientist like Raymond Edwards seemed compelled to seek out the services of a man like him. Wondering what else the good doctor had erased from the company’s security videos.

Dragging his attention to the man seated behind the desk, he listened as Edwards offered a rather lengthy introduction about the work that his biotech company did and their many accomplishments. Edwards’ manner was outwardly confident and business-like, but Mick couldn’t help but notice how the doctor kept his right hand on the face of the file on his desk and fiddled with one corner of the thick folder, thumbing it again and again. The curled corner of the papers confirmed that Edwards had opened up that file more times than the good doctor wanted him to know.

When Edwards paused for a breath, Mick seized the opportunity. “Your mission is clear, Dr. Edwards. Your company specializes in developing gene therapies for the terminally ill.”

The man stiffened and immediately corrected him. “Our present group of patients is terminally ill, but we hope that what we learn from our current research –”

“Will help all of mankind in the future. So why do you require my services?”

Copyright 2009 Caridad Pineiro Scordato – All rights reserved.