with apologies to John McLaughlin
The next morning we walked out of Grasmere past someone’s lovely garden and hiked up a steeper trail to Helm Crag (about 350 meters). The views were stunning. Another 10-mile day. You should go if you get the chance! Click any image to see each of them enlarged to full size.
After a misty walk from Ambleside we arrived at Rydal Mount Gardens. Some of these gardens were designed by William Wordsworth who lived nearby for the latter half of his life. While we waited to tour his house we visited the Grot, a small grotto designed specifically to give a romantic, pre-composed view of the gorgeous nature abounding. We had pre-booked our tour and the guide was a young man with a lot of Wordsworth expertise living in a small apartment in the house who gave us a lively and fact-filled introduction, then let us get on with it. Click any image to see them each enlarged to full size.
Seeking to whisk my wife away from our ongoing pandemic solitude for an afternoon I consulted Atlas Obscura for something new to see. As a 60-year denizen of the city it’s getting harder to find new things and many venues are, of course closed for the pandemic (and many may, sadly, never re-open). The Atlas recommended the Gardens of St Luke in the Fields, “a quiet and contemplative oasis in the middle of New York’s bustle and riot.” We have, of course passed by on the street many times without realizing there was more to go in and see. From the description there was much to see and many gardens to explore. And while, as I hope these pictures will attest, the Garden is lovely, much of it is not open to see. The area we walked on a raw and chilly Spring afternoon was too small to provide much escape from the bustle and noise of the surrounding streets or the Garden’s many visitors, all there no doubt with the same fond hope as us. I’d still recommend it if you find yourself in the area.
Click any image to see them all enlarged.
Another low-res image from the archive, late summer, 2003.
Back in our hotel in Niagara Falls the next day, we looked down on this odd, fake minaret-ty thing and the fountains and garden below
Niagara-on-the-Lake is also the home of the Shaw Festival and in the evening we saw an extremely good production of Howard Barker’s Victory. I was not previously familiar with Barker and read up on him a bit after the play. While, ultimately, I’m not sold on his reported approach to theatre or what I was able to take away from the play, it was certainly an interesting evening of serious drama, well acted, particularly, I thought, by Martha Burns as the widow Bradshaw. In the intermission we sat briefly in a small garden plaza behind the theatre, bordering a meadow, whence this picture.