Thursday, 1 February 2007

Feeding the soul.

For many years now, I have taken a keen interest in the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. On several occasions my husband and I have been fortunate enough to be visitors there, and have marvelled at the excellence of the Show Gardens, and been amazed by the overall high standard of the smaller gardens on display.

Some are very progressive and modern in outlook, incorporating a variety of materials including concrete, iron, stainless steel and plastic. Others include features of interest, such as mirrored waterfalls, granite boulders, bubble fountains, or statues made of marble or bronze.

Each year there has seemed no end to the ingenuity of the designers and the expertise of the builders, not to mention the prohibitive costs involved in creating these gardens. But of all the ones we have seen, those which have had a lasting effect on me are ones with that indefinable je ne sais quoit. It’s something to do with them exuding a touch of soul and romance.

Often it’s a quiet corner with a bench or a chair amidst a profusion of cottage-garden flowers. Certainly it’s an area of privacy. Each of us, from time to time, needs a place of quiet contemplation where we can breathe in fresh air and unwind, letting the cares of the world go by, a place where we are able to shut out the minutia of everyday life and recharge our batteries, a place to be alone with our thoughts, that all-important inner sanctum.

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