When I was in line to get my National Insurance Number, which was one of the first things I did when I moved to the UK, my friend came up with a brilliant idea, or at least, she was so enthusiastic about it, that she could have convinced me of it. She told me that she needs to take me to the Sky Garden and immediately went on her phone to try and book two tickets. I had no idea what that is. Sounds like a paradise! Did she find a shortcut to Eden? And that’s when she woke me up from my fantasy and said: it’s fully booked!
I completely forgot about this potential paradise that I found out later that is in the middle of London…so things were starting to sound better and better. Still, it only took me a year to book two tickets for the first day of the Christmas Holiday. I wanted to surprise Paul, so once I made up my mind about going, I was on Sky Garden’s website haunting for tickets and I was so eager to book them, that I thought “why not check even 3 weeks in advance, every single day, even thought it was written clearly that the tickets are released only one week in advance”. Until I finally made the reservation and that is when it stopped being a secret because I was too enthusiastic about it and I was scared Paul would want to surprise me with something on the same day…so to avoid any clash of the surprises, I told him about it. Next question, our code for “are we taking any pictures?” was “should I take the pointe shoes with us?” and that is what we did.
The Sky Garden is on the “stay away if you’re scared of hights” level of the Walkie-talkie building, which I heard of, but then I don’t know the entire London lingo…yet. Surprinsingly, the queue was not too long because you need to book a reservation so they can control how many people they have entering every half an hour. Being just before Christmas time, the cute Christmas cafe that smelled of coffee, cinnamon and mulled wine was at the bottom of the small luxuriant jungle that was luring us to even bigger heights. I must admit that it was not…should we call it the Botanical Garden?…that I wanted to explore first, but the balcony with the view over Thames and the most amazing London skyline. If you go on a sunny day, it’s even more beautiful. The day we went, let’s just say that The Shard had it’s head in the clouds…literally.
Then, when we finally went to see the Garden, something very touching happened. We were getting ready for a shot, actually, we already shot a few pictures when an elderly couple approached us. The gentleman was so surprised to see pointe shoes in real life and than he was even more surprised to see them outside of the studio or the theatre. We explained what we were doing there and where we are from, originally, when the lady’s face just lit up and said that her name is – a Romanian name- and that her uncle emigrated from Romania to Paris and worked as an architect. She was so proud of her Romanian heritage and so happy to meet…well, a younger Romanian couple (us). Their enthusiasm made our day!
I am telling you, this is a place that besides the fact that it’s free, you need to visit it at least once!
Anyone thinking of spring yet?