Raiesa's Secret Garden


Today my friend Raiesa took me to see a little garden she had found. She’d been telling me about it for a while, and I hadn’t had a chance to see it with all the coursework I was working on. Today I met her in the library and we walked along a scenic route to some old ruins. There’s a little footpath by the river which we followed past some allotments, up some steep steps and over an old railway bridge. After a few minutes, we reached a wooden gate. She opened it and we walked through.

Raiesa walking to the secret garden
Raiesa leading the way to her secret garden

I didn’t immediately register the scenery around me because I was distracted by the pretty plants and trees, and was trying to take pictures of everything. Then I looked up, and what I saw was so strikingly beautiful that I was taken aback and just stood there gaping. How can I have lived here for 18 years and not found this place? Surely it should be more well-known. St Albans has many parks, but none of them compare to this.

The Bridge in the secret garden
The bridge

The things that made it special was the eerie quiet, the fact that for most of our time there we were the only people around, the sound of the birds chirping and twittering, the gentle warm breeze… it was breathtaking. We sat on a bench in silence for a while, (apart from the noise of the shutter on my camera going clickety click click), and just soaked it all in.

Raiesa looking like an old lady sitting on a bench
Raiesa looking like an old lady

I’d like to share this garden with everyone I know, but in doing so, would that make it less special? There’s a part of me that is scared that if everyone knew about this sacred place, wouldn’t they all want to see it, and leave litter, and make lots of noise? Or is it better that if you know about something so beautiful, you should share it with everyone?