We took a lovely train ride out to Windsor to see Windsor Castle and the quaint town nearby, also the home to Eton, the exclusive school. Weather was a bit dreary, but not too cold. Unfortunately, Her Majesty was in residence which meant we could go on the castle grounds for free, but were unable to get into any of her “apartments.” Major bummer as I was dying to see the various bedrooms, kitchens, dining areas, etc. that we had seen on the PBS special about a year in the life of Windsor Castle.
Nevertheless, we were able to walk around all the grounds and see St. George’s Chapel. The guards were patrolling all over the area and are quite attractive in their bright red coats and furry hats. Real guns — no one will mess with them.
The gardens and areas in and around Windsor Castle are lovely. Well-kept and so green thanks to the spring rains. If you see the picture of the entrance to the Moat Path in the slide show below, it is now the entrance to the gardens that have replaced the moat.
We then headed to town where we had fish and chips in a delightful pub and walked around town before returning to London. The train ride was nice and it was a good way to also get a glimpse of the suburbs and countryside around London.
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.
Woke up to a brrr in the air. There’s no doubt that fall is here, but that doesn’t mean the end of color in your garden.
Best bet – Hardy mums! Treat them right and they’ll survive the winter and come back for more fall foilage next year. Plus, there is such a wide range of colors to brighten a possibly dreary autumn day.
If you’re going to cut the mums as a gift, just be careful to whom you present them. In some cultures, Latins and Italians, the mum is known as the “Flower of the dead” and is typically not presented to someone as a bouquet.
Next best bet – flowering kale. Fill your borders and other low-lying areas with colorful kale in deep purples with bright white centers or totally white ornamental kale.
Another good bet is one of my favorite flowers – pansies/violas. They’ll survive a mild frost and violas are perennials, so look for them to return next year. Also, pansies are excellect reseeders, so don’t be surprised to see them coming up in the early spring as soon as it starts to get warmer.
Last but not least, colorful asters will provide awesome fall blooms and better yet, they’re perennials so they’ll be back next year for more color.
Hope you enjoyed today’s Tuesday Tip! What are your favorite fall flowers?