Slow, slow, quick quick, slow ...

Nymans Gardens.
Nymans Gardens.

DON’T you just hate it when you get stuck behind one of those loiterers when you’re in a supermarket?

You know the kind - they walk round at a snail’s pace, leaning their elbows on the trolley handle. Then they stop in the middle of the aisle for no particular reason, still with their elbows leaning on the trolley. When they start off again it’s at another slow shuffle.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all in favour of a leisurely pace and savouring the moment. But there’s a time and a place. And the middle of Sainsbury’s, Waitrose or Tesco’s is definitely not it.

Come to think of it, The Loitering Menaces are not confined to supermarkets alone. I visited Nymans Gardens near Handcross on Monday. It was a gloriously sunny morning following Sunday’s downpours and I obviously wasn’t the only one who thought that walking off the festive excesses at Nymans would be a good idea.

In fact, cars were queuing to get in and I ended up having to park in the overflow carpark. No sooner had I stopped and got out when someone parked next to me. The other driver opened his car door and got out, leaving the door open - then stood there for ages, faffing around with coats, boots and gloves.

The thing is, his open car door meant that my passenger couldn’t get out of her side of my car. And the Other Driver was totally oblivious to the fact. And so was his wife who simply watched and waited until the husband was suitably clothed and shod - and finally shut his car door, releasing my passenger.

What a contrast with Nature. There’s no loitering there. As we embarked on our tour of the gardens, it was obvious that spring has been sprinting ahead at full pelt. Daffodils in flower, loads of camellias - and even some rhododendrons in bloom months ahead of shedule. And there were Michaelmas daisies still in flower that would normally have finished blooming in October. A case of slow, slow, quick, quick, slow. Just like me stuck in a supermarket behind one of The Loiterers.

Above: Camellias in full bloom at Nymans Gardens, Handcross.