It's winter here in Sydney. There's not much to complain about, however, it's nothing like the freezing winters of my Coventry childhood. It's not even a patch on winter in Canberra or Tasmania. Early morning is chilly and it's certainly cool when the sun goes down but inbetween times it's quite lovely. Todays picture was taken during a stroll through Centennial Park. It's a beautiful public space. Within 5 minutes of leaving the hustle and bustle of Oxford St you can enter an oasis of piece and quiet. Just watch out for the Eastern Suburbs yummy mummies and their ubiquitous Bugaboo prams. Keep walking past the Sass & Bide jeans, GHDd highlights, Pandora bracelets and babychino brigade and you'll lose yourself in two square kilometres of parkland. Formal gardens with old English style statues share space with duck ponds, playing fields and horse riders. There's a dedicated cycling track which was used during the 2000 Sydney Olympics. (SSS went to see the male trampolining during the Olympics, the official line is that everything else was sold out.)
Even though I live near the beach I prefer to be near the tranquility of forests and trees. One of the things I liked best about my former home in East London was its close proximity to an old remnant of Epping Forest. It only took a short walk from my front door I was able to find sanctuary in woodland. The sound of the traffic was reduced to a distant hum and the only sounds were made by squirrels darting about on the forest floor. It was cool, dark and peaceful. Sometimes I close my eyes and imagine I'm there. Fortunately I can go here and picture myself strolling towards the trees to the left. People may mock East London and Essex but let me tell you, if you want peace and quiet in ancient forest you won't be disappointed. Sometimes the best things in life really are free.