Wednesday, 30 September 2009


The photo challenge this week on SCS is "Timeless". This photo, being about 12 years old, is not eligible, but when I was thinking about the theme this morning, and about the Botanic Gardens, this photo came to mind.

It was taken in the chateau grounds at Villandry. Villandry isn't one of the chateaux you visit to see the castle, particularly. It's the gardens that are the real show-stopper. And strangely, for the official website, the photos in that link are a bit disappointing. There are nine square formal beds, planted totally with vegetables, using proper crop rotation. They are quite amazing to see - I'll have to scan and post a couple of my better photos. We took the car to France that year, and stayed part of the time with friends, and then took off on our own and camped around the Loire Valley. We had to specially buy a roof-rack; we knew that our friend F was going to take advantage of coming back to Ireland in a car to bring stuff that she couldn't normally manage on the plane or as a foot passenger. My last photo from the holiday is C trying to load everything into the car - the fact that we now had two guitars instead of just one added considerably to the volume.
I love this dog statue, gazing out over the garden with his patina of lichen.
And while I'm on the theme, here's an even older dog photo. This was taken a couple of months before we got married, so 22 years ago - so not the best photo. My last job in the UK before I came back here was in Brodsworth Hall, when it was still a private home. It looks as if it was just the next year that English Heritage took it over. The greyhound (?) sculptures were at the bases of each flight of steps down into the garden - you can just about see in the photo on the website :D.

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