Gardens to Gables

Cemeteries, stories and memory

Growing up, I spent a good deal of time visiting cemeteries and graveyards, both those established sites with their neat rows of markers and stones, and the wild, neglected and mostly forgotten spots scattered across my family farm. I never found them spooky or macabre Read More

A Garden Farewell

I went back to my first garden a few weeks ago, and over the span of a few hot, sweaty hours, finally said my goodbyes. The exertion of taming a landscape I had shaped and formed and had been absent from for three years kept Read More

The misbehaving teapot at Fortnum’s

I was not a tea drinker until my junior year of college. Through genetics, I’ve been lucky (or cursed?) to be fairly energetic most of the time, so a need for caffeine wasn’t established – and even then, when I first embarked on my tea Read More

A wild adventure doomed to early failure

Regent’s Park, established around 1811, covers 410 acres in the north central London. It is, by far, my very favorite park in London.  Before Henry VIII’s seizure and subsequent dissolution of the monasteries, the land belonged to Barking Abbey (a wonderful name). Alas, the monk’s Read More

Hiking Hadrian’s Wall

Looking back toward Housesteads along Hadrian’s Wall Years ago, I read an article in Smithsonian Magazine about hiking Hadrian’s Wall, and while I am not typically a mad hiker, the images and the idea lingered.*   Since England can’t seem to shake its heat wave Read More

Henry VIII, Jane Austen and Glam Rock Artists

My travels about the English countryside have provided an unparalleled opportunity to see entrancing landscapes, incredible architecture, meet wonderful people, and inevitably, to be stranded after missing yet another bus. So it was with some optimistic cheer I planned an easy, relaxing jaunt on a Read More

A Village Tour (or, how I know nothing about medieval architecture)

  Much more learned individuals than me have voiced the idiom that one is always learning, and the condition of that journey is the continual discovery of how very little you actually know. And I know next to nothing about medieval houses, which is fairly Read More

Sieges, marble and bats: the upper crust of Dorset

The curtailment of my wanderings owes greatly to my lack of a car (also, the lack of funds to rent a car, or the most preferred option, a driver and a car. The latter scenario also involves bonbons, champagne and the eventual purchase of my Read More

East of England Idyll…or, a Day on the Manor Farm

After resting my eyes upon countless hillsides dotted with grazing sheep in the Lake District, my visit to Wimpole Hall and Farm (a National Trust site) provided a different rural perspective. Wimpole, located about 11 miles from Cambridge, is a commercial lowland farm of 2,500 Read More

The mortal meandering of a corpse way

  My first full day in the Lake District was wet. And soggy. Though relieved to have packed my enormous (and bright) parka, I did not have the foresight to pack my camera bag – therefore the combination of startling color and the strange protuberance Read More