We took advantage of a free day to drive back to the National Botanic Garden for a second visit on the same ticket, as you can return any time within the same week. Saturday was quiet, today the place was busy with lots of young families enjoying leisure activities geared for the school holidays. I guess on Saturdays, parents either took their kids to the beach or went shopping. Today, it was cloudy with occasionally sunny breaks, and perhaps a little too cold for paddling and sandcastles. It was lovely to hear crowds of children having fun, enjoying the open air, exploring the play park or the hay bale maze.
We followed one of the walking trails up the east facing side of the valley, and walked for nearly two hours before returning to the site restaurant for lunch. At different stages along marked routes there are interpretation panels explaining the sustainable organic cattle farming that takes place on the Botanic Garden estate lands and what this does to restore wildlife to the region, which has been suppressed in many other places by modern farming practices. We walked a short circuit of meadow and woodland rich with flowers and birds after lunch, and sat for a while enjoying the big walled garden before we headed back to Cardiff in good time for evening commitments.
Clare came with me as far as the town centre when I drove to St German's for the evening Mass. She was on her way to a performance of Bach's St John's Passion in St David's Hall. There were ten of us for Mass this evening. Purely by chance, as I started the car, the radio was tuned to Radio 3, and the first half of the performance Clare was listening to in situ was just coming to an end. I listened to the second half when I got home, while chatting to Rachel in a belated birthday greeting call. It was good to catch up with her latest musical news. And now, another attempt at an early night, bed!