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Holland Park: A London Nature Walk - Little Observationist
Woodchips crunch beneath my feet, damp from this week’s daily rain showers. An intense sweetness of sap from freshly cut trees thickens the air, a feathery stash of pine branches piled on one side of the path, segments of a trunk tossed on the other. A squirrel pauses in front of me, then scurries off to perch, statue-still, on a rickety wooden fence post. Holland Park is small, but the wooded trails that run along one side are one of my favourite places in London to re-connect with nature. I think about growing up when I did and the way the world is now with so much technology replacing the great outdoors. It’s great to see kids still running around there. We spent most of our free time in those days chasing each other across a wide open field, playing hide and seek, climbing trees, catching frogs in the stagnant ponds near the railway tracks, sitting on steps chatting for hours with friends, playing hockey in the streets, going on camping adventures. We were always feeling long blades of grass between bare toes and brisk wind on our cheeks, smelling the unmistakeable summer scent of a mowed lawn or barbecue, …