Friday, 19 February 2016

Trains and Trees

It being the Friday of half-term, we were, as we have often been, on grandparent duty.  The smaller boy is happily ensconced at nursery, so it was the 5½-year-old Boy who was our responsibility for the day.

When we said goodbye to him on Thursday evening, we had quite thought that we would be taking him to the South Bank to see what, if anything, was going on there that he might enjoy.  However, a couple of serendipitous posts that I found on-line changed everything.

The first was the news that "Princess", an engine from the Ffestiniog Railway, was visiting King's Cross Station as part of a publicity campaign for the said Railway.  So that was a no-brainer in itself!  We picked the Boy up from Senate House and caught a bus up to King's Cross, where, sure enough, the train was parked.  And a magnet for five-year-olds, it would seem..... plenty of other children clambering about all over it.  Mind you, some 65-year-olds did their fair share of clambering!

When we had finally had enough, we went over to Prets and bought some lunch, and then caught two buses down to Brockwell Park - with hindsight, we should have caught the 73 that came along, and then changed at Victoria, as we had to wait rather longer than we had thought for a 59.  Still, we got on one in the end.

The reason we wanted to go to Brockwell Park was that the London Wildlife Trust was planting trees there today.  So after using the facilities and eating our lunch, we headed down to that corner of the Park, and there they were.  The Swan Whisperer and the Boy promptly got stuck in, and I am delighted to say the Boy was fascinated by the whole process, and the different kinds of trees, and how these twig-like things were going to grow into huge trees, and so on.  You dug a hole (the Swan Whisperer did that)
and then put some woodchip in the bottom, put your tree in, and someone held it upright (usually the Boy) while you put the soil and grass back in,
and then you added some more woodchip on the top (me or the Boy, but mostly him), and finished it off with a plastic tube to deter rabbits, squirrels, etc.
Great fun, and they must have planted four or five trees in all before we came away home and ate ice-cream!  Maybe in 60 years time he will be bringing his grandsons to the park and showing them the trees he helped to plant today!

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