Sunday, August 24, 2014

Hey everyone, the bluebells are starting!

Wish I were a better photographer...
See this earlier post about bluebells - Spanish and English, and their connection to asparagus...

Picnic time in Roland's Wood

Lovely to see the cheerful Sykes family enjoying an early spring picnic supper at Roland's Wood today :-)

 Even ample parking for the transport!

Hatchards at Roland's Wood

It was a pleasure to meet John and Dawn Hatchard at the end of their walk in Roland's Wood late this afternoon, just as the sun was going down...

I said I'd have no problem remembering that surname - John Hatchard is a descendent of the John Hatchard who founded Hatchard's bookshop of Picadilly, London which is where I worked when on my OE in London in the 1980s and happily met my bookseller husband, Kevin.

Hatchards is a special and wonderful bookshop - for reasons as well as romance! It was founded in 1797, and is still going today - London's oldest bookshop, 5 floors of books in an old building, paperbacks "below stairs", children's books on the top floor, with staff who all read and love books...  It is next door to a very smart "grocer's shop" - Fortnum and Mason, and across the road from the Royal Academy.

Read more about Hatchards here from Wikipedia -  "Its origins were founded through a bought collection of merchandise from Simon Vandenbergh, a bookseller of the 18th century. Simon Vandenbergh's grandson, John Vandenbergh Quick was the inventor of the first pop up book and his grandson created the images of Sherlock Holmes and Mother Goose as we know them today in wood carvings."

and here is a link to the (not very exciting) website.

Many of Hatchards customers were rather old school, and one of my favourite stories was from Simon Bainbridge, Front Shop Manager, who had a customer, an old codger in tweeds up to London from the country, doing errands for his wife...  He came into the shop, and reading from his list, asked, "Have you got Face Cream by Elizabeth Arden?"  Bless.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Billy, Jill and compliments

A lovely email came through on Friday from Jill who loves visiting the Woods with her beautiful golden retriever, Billy...

Hi Jeannie
I would like to say how much I love Roland’s Woods, for so many reasons.  The settings , the gardens, the different seasons and the different views, the freedom to walk my dog without issue, the other lovely people and dogs you meet there.

I am not a local but live in Haruru Falls and visit the Woods whenever I can.  So today I managed a short and level walk at the top of the grounds,  I am 6 weeks in recuperating from a big Spinal Op.  I had been wanting to see the beginning of the spring flowers, I was not disappointed.

I enclose a photo of Billy my Golden retriever enjoying with me some early daffodils.  Thanks to all involved in what is such a delight in my life.

This was such a delight to receive - so glad to have another story to share here on the blog, and who could resist Billy - such a beautiful dog with a backdrop of golden daffodils, like a burst of sunshine on a wintery day...