Thursday, 24 July 2008

Our front garden

Our house at 15 Croft Gardens had a front and a back garden. (This is a reason why I could never live in a flat - all my life I've lived in a house with two gardens. ) The back garden, where I spent many a happy childhood hour, will be the subject, no doubt, of many separate posts, the front garden was less important from the point of view of playing.

A brick wall, some nine inches thick, separated the front garden from the pavement. A wrought-iron double gate opened up to the short drive up to the garage. The wall had three brick pillars between stretched which two sections of brickwork with a dip in the middle of each.

In my childhood makebelieve, the wall was like a railway train, the gates like a level crossing. I would sit astride the wall and imagine the train was approaching the crossing, which had to be opened, then closed.

The main feature of the front garden was a magnolia bush (today grown very large), which in bloom was quite magnificent.

The advantage of the front garden over the back was the ability to watch the world go by. Milk floats, the rag-and-bone man, cyclists, delivery vans, motorbikes, pedestrians and the occasional car, most of which warranted careful observation.

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