Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Regent's Park and Three Macaws

I had to drop by school yesterday to pick up a book, so as long as I was down that way, I figured I'd go to Regent's Park. I don't often visit Regent's, one of the eight Royal Parks, which was named for the Prince Regent (aka the "playboy prince") who later became King George IV. Even though it's the closest Royal Park to our neighborhood and not far from school, it seems I always have somewhere else to go. But not yesterday!

The park has two circular roads, one inside the other, and the formal Queen Mary's Rose Gardens inside the concentric rings. There are ponds and statues and, in the rest of the park, wide-open grassy areas. The London Zoo is located in the northeast corner -- I didn't go there, and in fact I'm not sure it's open at the moment.

The photos above and below show the formal gardens. There are so many roses blooming that they scent the air. Can you see the delphiniums, the blue spires in the background of the top photo, at the right? They were huge.

I have no idea why those traffic cones are in the fountain. They look like weird, futuristic koi, don't they?

I thought this was humorous -- a bird perched on top of a bird.

Speaking of birds, I stopped and sat on a tree stump and ate lunch I'd picked up at a nearby take-away shop. I heard a rustling sound behind me, and turned to find two big crows sneaking up to steal my potato chips. The nerve!

The BT Tower is easily visible from the south side of the park. As you can see, the scrolling message -- which used to read "Stay Home > Protect the NHS," has been changed (in line with government recommendations) to the comparatively vague "Stay Alert > Control the Virus."

There was some excitement while I walked down the Broad Walk, a tree-lined avenue on the east side of the park. I heard a helicopter close overhead, and watched as an air ambulance landed nearby. I have no idea what was going on. I didn't stick around to find out.

Instead I crossed out of the park and went to adjacent Primrose Hill...

...where I came across this guy and his brother, exercising their beautiful macaws. The birds above are named Sonic (on the ground) and Phoenix. He'd send them off in flight and they'd fly a wide circle around the park and then come back and land on his shoulders. 

They looked amazing in flight, but unfortunately I could never get an ideal shot. They move fast!

This bird, Rio, is a rescue whose wings had been kept clipped by its former owner. Rio was wearing a long lead while being trained to fly free as its wings grew back.

So the day just kept getting stranger -- from a pleasant picnic and a rose garden to an air ambulance and brilliantly colored macaws. To cap it all off, as I was walking home, an Eastern European woman beckoned me over to a bus stop in Belsize Park and asked haltingly if I spoke English. When I said yes, she pointed to another woman sitting next to her, a Japanese tourist who apparently left her phone on a bus and needed assistance. (I thought, "We have tourists now?!") We tried to call the phone, and when that didn't work, I explained the situation to the driver of the next bus that stopped. He said he'd take her to the end of the line and try to locate the phone on the previous bus. The Japanese woman seemed doubtful but went with him, so fingers crossed.


  1. What an interesting day you had. Never heard of macaws being flown like that. Today will probably seem very boring in comparison. I think that the zoo may be open next week according to Boris !

  2. Why did you fib when responding to the Eastern European woman? After all, you don't speak English, you speak American! Remember "sidewalk" and "color"? I do. I hope that the Japanese woman found her phone. I guess that dozens of mobile phones are lost in London every day. They are probably tossed into a huge pit behind Wormwood Scrubs prison.

    P.S. I understand that Johnson is going to be exhibited at London Zoo - as an albino gorilla.

  3. Love the Macaws especially the on on the ground with his feet in the air, lol
    The owner had a real tender look as he held the other one, nice to see.

  4. You had an exciting day! At least by my standards.
    Those gardens look amazing. And the macaws! Beautiful.
    And then you helped a tourist. (A tourist? Really?)
    Stay Aware! That is vague. Not like you can see the virus and be aware of it. This has all gotten so damn confusing.

  5. And Olga Girl Was Asleep On The Bed Until You Arrived Back Home - Excellent Photos Of The Macaws In Flight - Enjoy The Last Few Days Of The Work Week


  6. I remember that area of Regent's Park. I think I have a photo of the BT tower I took from there. Those Macaws are beautiful. How fun that you got to see them flying. That is quite a lot of excitement for one day!

  7. those are some beautiful birds. and how great that they are allowed to fly free.

  8. What an interesting little adventure... almost like a day in Wonderland.

  9. Interesting that a simple little errand turns into an interesting adventure.

  10. What a wonderful and wild day at the park. Love those macaws, they are so beautiful. A lot of excitement out there on your walk.

  11. I have a soft spot for macaws. They're not only beautiful, but they're playful, smart, and affectionate. How wild that you saw some at the park! Marco approves of that idea. :)

  12. I had no idea macaws could be trained in that fashion. They *are* gorgeous birds.

  13. My goodness, you had a busy and interesting day! Those birds are gorgeous. It must be nice to travel through such a garden full of fragrant roses. You have a wonderful day, hugs, Edna B.

  14. So much activity in one day, and those parrots - incredibly smart, beautiful, that alone would make my year complete. We are still shuttered here, taking the virus as seriously as we would an air raid/bombs/gas that lasted four months or longer, the virus has changed the way we do things or don't do things- more like it. The virus will have its way and is not going anywhere anytime soon. We are more cautious than most areas, and having seen NOVA last night - a special presentation on Covid19, we are even more careful. So, staying home is the deal. The only way at this point to sidestep Rona.

  15. I'm with Briony - love the macaw on his back with his little feet up! So stinkin' cute!

    That was an interesting day for sure.

  16. Love the macaws, they're beautiful smart birds.

  17. I love everything about this post! The macaws are gorgeous, and the roses, and the delphiniums peeking over the top of them...

  18. Frances: I'd be afraid they'd fly away and not come back!

    YP: I know this will come as a shock to you, my linguistically idealistic Yorkshireman, but there is no such language as "American."

    Briony: These guys both clearly cared for their birds.

    Ms Moon: The "Stay Alert" warning is ridiculous.

    Padre: No, she was out with her dog-walker, having her own fabulous time!

    Sharon: It WAS kind of a wild day!

    Ellen: It must feel really good to them. I'm sure most pet birds never have that experience.

    Mitchell: It was! Sometimes it's nice to just get out and walk not knowing where the road will take you.

    Red: Gotta make life interesting!

    Robin: The macaws were incredible. I don't think I've ever seen anything like that.

    Jennifer: I bet he does! Maybe we shouldn't given him any ideas, though?!

    Catalyst: They're apparently very smart. (As Jennifer says above.)

    Edna: It was a beautiful garden, and this was the perfect time of year to visit.

    Linda Sue: But you can still get out and walk around outside, right? I keep distant from everyone (as much as possible) but I do get out and about.

    Jenny-O: It was VERY cute. He would tickle the bird's belly and the bird would cling to his hand as he lifted it up.

    Allison: They were beautiful!

    Bug: I've never seen delphiniums that big. Ours is not only smaller, it's still just buds! The flowers haven't opened yet. I'm not sure why theirs are so far ahead. Maybe they started them in a greenhouse.

  19. That was lovely. I used to live on the western edge of Regent's park and used to cycle through it in the early morning to get to work.