I cannot believe it was this morning that we went to get flowers at the Columbia Road Flower Market. It has been a huge exhausting day 18,867 steps, at least 4 bake shops/sweet shops, a deli or two or more and 5 or six amazing private gardens.
The walk to Columbia Road was about ten minutes and yes, again all new.
How can it be that every day i walk out and find a new street with new shops and new things to see. I loved the Columbia Road area, so many small shops and a place or two to eat and just a really small clutch of pretty feel. Since we have no vase at home we were limited on what we could buy. We passed people who were walking home with armloads of flowers. We got a small bunch of something white and set them in a drinking glass. Motivating me to search out a charity shop or two where I can buy an inexpensive second hand vase.
Then home to grab a quick morning snack and off to Triangle Garden, the first and most amazing private Garden.
Triangle Garden is truly a triangle completely surrounded by beautiful homes. We spoke enough with a couple of ladies who have lived here more than 25 years to learn that they have had the same gardener since 1985 and rarely make changes. Each time you turned you saw a new tasteful arrangement. I was in love. It was a bit of a spoiled decadent experience to imagine myself living here.
Then across the road and around the corner to Crescent Garden. Much larger and very lovely but it definitely made me see that there was also a beautiful intimacy that is lost when you get too big. Crescent had a small children’s play area and was three or four times the size of Triangle. Nicely though I was able to lie down on a bench and relax… I could get into this life.
The Open Garden Squares Weekend is an annual event. Public and private squares are open to the public. Some have games, some poetry or tea, and some just let you walk. At two or three we were given a grounds map.
Time to catch a bus to Marylebone…. and a zig zaggy walk through Portman Square, Manchester Square, Montagu Square, Fratelli Greci for Paprika and a Greek Chocolate bar ( can you say thumbs down). A very disappointing stop at Briciole where we had expected a fabulous deli, a bad brownie from Bonne Bouche, and a missed opportunity at Baker and Spice. A stop at Pierre Marcollini, another outrageously expensive chocolate shop and the place I will be sure to return to, La Fromagerie.
Montagu was a long slender strip of green, with enough room for a picnic and benches along its paths. We got caught in the rain here and at some point John Lennon lived in one of the houses facing the square. These private squares each have their own appeal. I found the difference largely in the solitude and cleanliness.
Manchester square was round and across from The Wallace Collection, another free museum here in London.
Exhausted it was onto the most exquisite experience of the day. Park Square and Park Crescent Gardens at Regents Park. Open to members by a 1000 GBP yearly subscription and connected to each other under a major roadway by what they refer to as a nursemaids tunnel the experience was one of complete exclusivity.