Monday, 11 December 2017

A tale of four seasons

A few minutes’ walk from where we live is Luton’s People’s Park. The name’s a pleasant reminder of a time when popular ownership of certain assets was thought of as a good thing, as it will, I hope, some time again when the present craze with rampant individualism passes. In the meantime, it’s a place many go for simple pleasure, and among them various members of our household, human and canine.

At the top of a park is a tree-lined avenue. It is strikingly beautiful at any time of year. The fact that it is comes as a celebration of the cycle of the seasons, of the way that even when things are as cold and as dark as they can be, sunlight and warmth aren’t that far away.

It’s never short of charm, however. For instance, since its a snowy December now, here’s the walk in winter.

A little earlier, in autumn, it can look like this.

Does that feel too cold and dismal? Don’t worry, it too shall pass. Before long the trees will be racing again to clothe themselves for spring – on this occasion with the left hand side wildly outstripping the right.

Before long, the sides fall into line with each other. Then we get glorious summer. The walk goes quiet and warm and green.

We wander through in shirtsleeves or, in the dogs’ case, panting, soaking in the warmth. What they dont know, but we do, is that this too is transient and soon we’ll be back to something much more austere. But no less striking.

Who cares if it turns cold again? It’s still stunning. And – who knows? – we might get snow again. 

Followed, once more, by the leaves unfurling.

In People’s Park. Where beauty awaits the people. And, of course, any dogs that come along with them to enjoy it.

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