From down below the sky often looks the same. Either it is blue, or there are some clouds drifting, or a degree of overcast or even completely gray. But from above the clouds the sky is never the same. There are skyscrapers reaching above the sky. Fluffy clouds like steam above a thermal pool. Layers of cloud like sheets of down duvet. Towery black clouds lit up by lightning rods exploding vertically.
Down below we forget the sun does not go away on a cloudy day. One just needs to be above the fluff-talk and confusion-soup of daily life to see it. (Somewhere above Europe; May 2016)
Here up North, gardening is serious business and all about flowers. Perhaps a bench could be in order. Or, if one has courage, a teensy weensy fountain. Or, for the most brave: a little statuette.
Kings and queens, on the other hand, have larger gardens. Mostly parks. With lakes, forests, and hills. A little fountain or statuette would disappear in such a garden. Kings and queens also used to get quite easily bored – if there was no war going on that is. Or famine. One can only host so many tea parties in a park with the exact same landscape. And one can only re-landscape a park every so often.
The most trendy solution during the 18th century was “follies”. Buildings made for absolutely no need except for to look nice. Or for example to dine outside with a view over hill and lake bathing in the light of the setting sun. One could just have a table carried out – or one could build an oval gazebo in the backyard and paint the ceiling with flowers.
And if a tea party turns out to be a bearable pastime and a summer tent was needed, why not build a Turkish tent out of copper? Or host the party in a Chinese pagoda?And, folly of follies, should the king become utterly completely bored with his beautiful castle, well, how about building a little garden shed, with just two wings and about 30 windows, for the king to move into? A little like a boy moving into the empty toolshed in the back of the garden? The king of Sweden did exactly this. Gustav III lived his last summers in his “garden shed” – until he was shot during a Venetian style masked ball. (Royal Haga Park, Stockholm, Sweden; April 2016)
Lovely ones, it has been a crazy few months. When I have not been looking at my computer or out of an airplane window, these have been my two favorite views: piled up on the balcony with the cats, and my coloring book. And the seashore of course – see a photo a few posts back.
They say that a purring cat and coloring both set the brain on the wavelength of deep meditation. Perhaps my body is wiser than my mind, because my mind certainly has not allowed much time for meditation exercises as such. But I am still waving and not yet drowning. And I have a few lovely things coming up from the French Riviera where I resurfaced a week ago, for a quick breather.
I wish you all soothing times with loudly purring cats and time to breathe.
(Helsinki, Finland; May 2016)
Once it was a field. Then, the suburb of gentry. Later, a fruit and vegetable market; and during its darkest times, the playground for ladies of the night and lost poets. Today, Covent Garden is a market again – and one of the most timelessly hip ones (if that is not an oxymoron).
Even the musicians are back – sounding as classy as the other Covent Garden just next door (also called the Royal Opera House. Never ask the English about how they name places).(Covent Garden Market, London, United Kingdom; April 2016)