Abingdon, garden, nature, scenery

Eight thirty in the Abbey Gardens.

I’m sitting on bench number 7. The dew is glistening on the grass and daisies are beginning to open from their slumber. Blackbirds are hopping around, tugging at worms and hunting for beetles.
Beautifully planted flower beds gleam with spring colour – acid yellow, deepest purple, blood-red, apricot orange. The smiling faces of pansies look across at me, their beautiful markings seemingly painted on by an early morning gardener.
Behind me are unseen birds chattering in the trees and hedges. About my feet pigeons and robins hop, oblivious to my presence, or hoping for a crumb or two.
The sun is pleasantly warm with the slightest of breezes to freshen the air. It is so peaceful here.
A small Neo-Classical wall with regular, symmetrical pillars frames the lawn of th formal garden. Its short height echoes the small box hedge at the centre of the garden, which is in need of clipping.
There are beds of heathers and forget-me-nots, their colours so subtle as to almost not be there, the merest breath of blue and purple.
In the distance I hear the faintest sound of traffic – a hum in the background punctuated all the time by birdsong – robins, blackbirds, finches – a treble note overlaying the bass rumble of traffic.
Occasionally a dog walker wanders around the paths, silent walkers with silent dogs.
A shimmering cloud of tiny insects hovers above the flowers. They dance and weave together, no more than specks in the sunshine.
Tall towering conifers, their spiky needles silhouetted against a pale blue morning sky, smaller ornamental trees with shivering leaves, horse chestnuts with their creamy white candle-like flowers peeping out from a haze of bright green leaves. High at the top of a cedar a crow sits perfectly still, watching.
Two larger insects with fluttering wings – moths? beetles? – tumble about in an acrobatic performance across the grass.
The hooting call of two ducks flying overhead making for the river beyond the stand of trees in the distance. Cooing of a pigeon in the tree behind me, followed by the beating of its wings against the foliage.
It is so peaceful here.


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