Seven years ago seems like such a long time. That was my visit to Manchester for my daughter’s graduation. This time it was her PhD. She’d made it to Edinburgh for mine and  was as happy for me then as I was for her in Manchester on that July afternoon.

I remember putting on her hat for a photo and thinking that I might have been cheated a bit, not having worn one for my graduation. I did think that Ruselle looked really smashing in that hat, not because she’s younger and prettier than I am. I imagined that my graduation photograph might have looked that much better if I ‘d had a hat like hers! As they say, the grass is always greener on the other side.

At the time, her home- St. Gabriel’s Hall – was a student residence; and there I inhaled the freshness of its garden, watching the bees buzz from one flower to another. There was a small variety of lovely roses too, and lilacs always grab me. They remind me of the lilac tree in the ravine below our house, a beauty that I used to admire from my bedroom window as a child. All the flowers in the collage above were growing at St. Gabriel’s.

A very rewarding Manchester trip it was as we did much sightseeing together. We walked through a nature reserve with hiking routes, flower gardens, trimmed lawns, beautiful birds, water features, so many of the things that I enjoy. It offered the relatively easy challenges of small hills to scale and stone steps to climb. There were spaces for quiet retreat and relaxing waters to watch and calm the soul. We sat on shaded benches and we enjoyed sunny spots. It was truly beautiful!

And that was only one stop.  I need another writing session to present out visit to Quarry Bank Mill as I learned so much there. And there were other places too, like the pub/restaurant that had white chalk calligraphy on its black slate menu board. But for now its ta-ta until…

Ruselle- 2013-07-22 RKM PhD Graduation

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