Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Tales from the National Gardens Scheme London Party

Last night was the official London NGS garden party at the Royal College of Physicians...a jolly occasion to celebrate what we all do, catch up with friends and meet other garden openers.
It was a lot later in the year than previously which was nice (there is only so much outdoor schmoozing you can do on a cold rainy evening in April) and I was looking forward to a good nosy round their garden.

I took Mum with me, as she is of course weeder No.1 and Steven is currently being a tennis Umpire for Wimbledon so wasn't around. ‘Should I wear a hat?’ she asked

So we rocked up at a rather grand affair (there were mini raspberry tartlets and lemon meringues and there was no way the tea would be in Styrofoam cups) The lovely Wayne was there looking infinitely more relaxed about his opening than last year, and had in fact seemed to be turning into quite the doyenne of the NGS.

 There were new people who had just opened their gardens (large glasses of wine), and people who were soon to open (apple juice and busy looking at the garden). There were people who had been opening for 20 years wondering if they would be getting gold trowels for service, and anxious that the 1 year they didn't open due to having a heart attack would meant that in the NGS eyes they were back to yr 1.

The actual college garden was great and we were treated to a tour by a very knowledgeable guy who led us round with a mini megaphone distilling facts about medicinal plants...his top fact for me was how eating a poppy seeded bagel would put enough opium into your system for you to fail an Olympic drugs test, and it would stay in your system for a week!

Annoyingly I looked away at the moment of drama when someone fainted into the flower beds. There were whispers at the back as to whether or not she had been trying some of the drugs that he was talking about, however I wondered if she was testing his knowledge about what plants she could be treated with.

So all in all a great evening, and very affirming for what we do. I am still in awe of all the fabulous people like Penny and all the organisers who run things as they are all volunteers which is great as unlike many large charities where 90p of your £1 may go to making that £1 with NGS the vast majority goes direct to good causes. Hurrah for the NGS!

PS apologies for being a bad blogger with no pictures, I had my camera but was so busy schmoozing and trying to attract the attention of the wine filler uppers that I blinked and it was over. So a nice picture of Ganesh looking great instead

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