Friday, 11 June 2021

Botanical Pleasures in June. A Natural High.

 

Map of walk.                              ALL PHOTOS CLICK FULL SCREEN

I haven't been posting as frequently lately as I've been busy doing other things  and posting every week became a bit of a habit rather than a pleasure so I've dropped it down to two a month in the meantime.

I'm still getting out and enjoying myself though and as June is a favourite month- early summer and all that... I was keen to experience it as it only happens once a year. This spring/summer so far has been fantastic in Glasgow- hardly any rain and two months of almost daily sunshine- so much in fact that Central Scotland now feels like arid California ( there is a California near Falkirk in fact- a former pit village I've cycled through) but this is more a California of the mind. 


As you can see from the map above where I normally park is on Queen Margaret Drive near the park gates but this proved impossible as I was meeting up with Anne and Belinda in the afternoon and by that time any spaces were already taken. Luckily, you can sometimes park in the network of streets around North Kelvin College or Kirklee Road so that was where we arranged to meet.

This was complete serendipity as we had a much longer walk into Glasgow's botanic gardens through a network of quiet upmarket streets we were mostly unfamiliar with, travelling across North Kelvin meadow...

part of it seen here...

then the handsome stone bridge at Kirklee Road to access the arboretum. We all forgot how nice this area is in early summer with the fresh green leaves at their best on the trees. Still deeply immersed in my 1960s and 1970s book collection I'm now re- reading the slim volumes of Richard Brautigan.   A Confederate General from Big Sur.... In Watermelon Sugar... Trout Fishing in America... and The Hawkline Monster ... all mostly set in the American West Coast.  California and the hippie culture, have been passed around in the last month and enjoyed. He's a very unusual writer and his books are filled with some weird and wonderful characters and ideas. Still funny 50 years later.


 That cerebral input.... the weeks of unbroken sunshine... wandering slowly through a posh area of classic old architecture ...and a vivid imagination... all combined to give me a completely natural high. Female company... hell any company during covid 19... but especially them... was the perfect icing on  top.

A path in the arboretum leads down into the River Kelvin Gorge which, on a day of scorching hot California style sunshine, was most welcome as we descended from heatwave dry openness into cool damp shade under the trees.  Sometimes it's only after completing a day out you look back and think 'that was a great day out' but on this occasion it was a dream walk... a dream day.... and a 'dream team' meeting... right from the outset. Every single second of it was truly special... in the moment... as it occurred.  Hence the title.

Walking in Heaven after this would have been a grave disappointment. A pure let down. A scunner in fact! Back entrance to the Botanic Gardens. Bluebells.

Flowers were at their very best....


Femme Fatales were at their finest, funniest, and most radiant... two lightly perfumed angels floating along, barely touching the ground... one of several bridges over the River Kelvin and my joy was almost un-containable by this point. Nature does that to you... especially at this time of year...

 The parks department were out and about... planting borders and weeding...

I was kissing bumble bees, babies, budgies, beagles, bald headed bikers, and perfect strangers all over the place. Hey it's San Fransisco in the 1960s man... it's allowed! At least in thought. Begone Virus! Hello the Haight Ashbury 2021 style. In my mind I was already, vividly, there. Without the need for any  lysergic component. Nature and sunshine alone works for me.

It was just wonderful... and rightly so. How many girls are called February??? March??? There's a good reason April, May, and June were once popular girls names when we lived closer to the natural dance of the seasons . The three best months in the year for colour, health, and beauty. 

I almost wafted away in sheer happiness...internally....


Set controls for the heart of the sun....

 Everywhere was colour, scent and visual splendor.

Unusual flowers... Black eyes peas from Venus perhaps...?

Grey Squirrel        I tried to kiss it... it ran away up a tree.... so I kissed the tree... and then me...twice!

 Vincent's Sunflower substitutes.


  A truly magical time of year. A month named after a Roman goddess you know... the Queen of all the gods.......Juno.

 A border detail...

Pink Magnolia...

A sunlit trio...


The wild River Kelvin.


Semi tamed part....

 City street overlooks the river gorge...

 The cream season for flowering debutantes..


A flower kaleidoscope... incidentally an instrument invented by a Scotsman I seem to recall...

 and a matching sunset to end what was a stunning day out. Thank you.

  So good I felt inspired to have something different for tea. Sweet chilli chicken, boiled eggs, cherry tomatoes, sliced kiwi fruit. Very tasty cold... far too hot for cooking in a kitchen. A sunburnt but very happy bunny goes to bed.


















5 comments:

Anabel Marsh said...

Magical! I recognise every bit of it and can vouch for the fact that you have done it justice. Maybe I even walked past the three of you at some point? Stranger things have happened.

Rosemary said...

I also know that walk having lived nearby in Hyndland Road for a couple of years.
Not 'Black eyed peas from Venus' rather Broad bean flowers, but they do actually look rather fetching in the borders.

blueskyscotland said...

Hi Anabel,
I was thinking, while walking, it was your neck of the woods. Don't think I've ever been in North Kelvin meadow before or walked down some of the nearby back streets as I usually park nearer the Byres Road end.

blueskyscotland said...

Hi Rosemary,
I guessed the pea family but I was also slipping in some partial song titles via Captain Beefheart and Pink Floyd to reference the 1960s and early 1970s period.

Carol said...

I didn't think you'd catch the sun - you're dark like me (I never do in Britain).

Not sure I've seen a pink magnolia before - it's very nice anyway. We have some bluebells left on the fells but the bracken is overtaking them and hiding them now. Our hawthorn blossom is something to be seen this year though - the trees are literally encrusted with them. Even my garden hedge has some blossom which it never had before! Of course, like the weather, it's all a month or so late!