As a Battery Point resident and garden lover, I would like to share a few of my experiences in these Extraordinary Times.
My husband and I are regular walkers to Salamanca Place, Sandy Bay and beyond. A walk through Princess Park has always been enjoyable with lots of children at play.
Now all is eerily quiet as the boat park is closed.
Passing Henslowe Park the swings are out of bounds due to COVID-19 but it is still used by locals who meet as per social distancing requirements to drink their take away coffee.
There is a quietness in the streets due to the reduction in traffic however it makes us more aware of other sounds – such as the bird calls and the comforting sound of the bell of St. George’s Church at noon each day.
There are children out riding their bikes with their parents making the most of the quiet streets.
There is more time to walk and explore and see with fresh eyes the Community in which we live.
We search for the elusive Teddy Bears and discover features of houses that we had not noticed before – an oriel window and some beautiful lattice and fretwork.
The gardens are a delight – crab apples, persimmons with their autumn colour and unpicked apples hanging from bending branches.
Tiny gardens full of interesting autumn flowers and the last roses of summer.
The rhythm of the seasons seems to give stability in this time of uncertainty. Raking the leaves from our two large ash trees has been an almost daily task for the past month (they make wonderful compost).
My husband is wondering what he will do when there are no more leaves to collect.
In the back garden I have been planting winter vegetables under the watchful eye of a wattlebird who sits close by.
However, it is while working in the front garden that we appreciate the community in which we live. The friendly hellos from people walking past, the conversations over the front fence enquiring how we are, questions about a plant in our garden that is unknown or that reminds the person of their childhood , such as the early gentian.
As I plant the tulips, I can’t help but wonder what the situation will be in Spring when the bulbs are in flower and the broad beans are ready to pick. We all look forward to less restrictions to our daily life, but I am enjoying the absence of cars and having time to stop and share experiences over the garden fence. How lucky we are to live in this Community.