Our trip to Holland Park

Each trip starts at school with, ‘Where’s the list? Who’s missing?’

Without fail Rinat our new Russian friend keeps us waiting, but over the weeks we’ve got used to him turning up at the destination with his bicycle, and saying he’s been waiting for us.

Due to our walks we’re getting to know London well. We follow Alex or Rebecca to the meeting place, and then listen carefully to Steve our knowledgeable guide as he tells us a bit of history or some interesting fact but sometimes we get distracted because we’re eating our ice cream and miss Steve’s explanation.

On the Holland park day we met Steve at the station at 4pm, and while he polished off his ice cream, he explained that the Holland Park area had the famous Millionaire’s Row of big houses, where the rich and famous have always lived. We asked who and Steve reeled off a list including the Beckhams, Simon Cowell, Elton John and Robbie Williams.Students didn’t know these names so Steve sang and played football and it was soon understood.

Then we crossed the road and entered Holland Park by the Abbotsbury Road entrance and were soon in a different world. On that hot afternoon that part of the park looked tropical with palm trees and bright flowers.

Then there was a wooded area , quite beautiful with the sun slanting through the trees. Selfies everywhere.

A favourite part was the Kyoto Garden with Kiri translating the Japanese notices and giving explanations. Big rocks were set in the perfect grass and Rebecca needed an explanation. Kiri came to the rescue , explaining that Japanese gardens reflect all the features of the world, mountains, sea, and earth. So the goldfish pond and the waterfall represented the sea, the grass the earth and the rocks represented mountains.

Leyal paid attention but most students didn’t worry about these details and made their way to the waterfall and stood on the bridge with Steve annoying other visitors and the goldfish. And taking more selfies. And hanging around for ages.

Finally we dragged ourselves away from the bridge and the goldfish and loved the bamboo forest, and look who we found there:

Then there was the statue, we couldn’t find out who he was but Marita seemed to hit it off with him.

Rebecca by this time was longing for an ice cream , and hurried students through the Mediterranean garden with its giant chess board where various young men disturbed the game , and the rose garden, then through the cloister with its beautiful painted wall to the Italian café which was very unfortunately closing. The open air theatre next door was getting ready for a performance so we didn’t stop there but headed for the avenue leading to Kensington High Street and a very nice bar which had seating for all of us and enough strawberry ice cream to keep us quiet for a while.

When we’d wolfed it all down we made our weary way to Kensington High Street station and the train, where we fell silent all the way back to Ealing and bed, and one or two nodded off. Well, some of us did.

Phrasal verbs to think about

  • Turn up
  • Reel off a list of..
  • To drag oneself away
  • To hang around
  • To hit it off with s.b.
  • Polish sth off
  • Long for sth
  • To head for somewhere
  • Wolf sth down

Published by Rebecca Sukkar

If you could like to join our free walking tours, you can! Just sign up at Reception. Our next tour is to … Mayfair and Park Lane

Published on 28 March, 2023