Went on a kayak paddle from Chiswick Pier to Twickenham and back with Kiki and Julius . We set off at a leisurely 9.20. We used Ventures and fusion boats. The weather was overcast with low predictions of rain. Our journey with the incoming tide was smooth, we went at an unusual leisurely pace via all the roundabout routes to look at the moored boats. There was strangely one rusting barge with graffiti paintings supporting NHS and works of art with the virus on the boat. A Pandemic had been turned into art. Julius was in fine form as was Kiki… We passed the stern of a boat with a bird nesting on it. Clearly we were not the only one where the birdlife was re-conquering its habitat.
We arrived in Twickenham for lunch and Kiki was taken on a tour of the famous Naked ladies statues which was the namesake of the Twickenham brewery beer which I highly recommend. There are eight girls in all, with the main lady standing on two winged water horses or hippogriffs overlooking a cascade and pool full of naked water nymphs.
The sculptures were imported from Italy by a fraudulent financier who committed suicide following his conviction in 1904.
Annoyingly the white swan was out of the amber nectar so I made do with some refreshing cloudy cider. We were forced to sit at tables to sample a drink so I forced myself to have a meal…Churlish not to. After ogling the naked ladies who were being overwhelming by vegetation, sadly hiding some of their beautiful figures we skipped over a small bridge into the secret gardens of York house.
Another Botticelli-like naked figure this time a bronze was encased in a shell. The fairyland gardens with little waterfalls was quite magical. We headed back to the boats guarded by tough security in the shape of Julius. By now a family of Egyptian geese were invading as the tide had changed and was retreating.
Kiki was in love again…usually with baby birds..as her loud cooing oooohhhh could be heard. She would happily have adopted one had the mother not been even bossier. She made do with feeding them one of Julius’s biscuits. We headed home – meandering to Richmond lock which had closed to maintain some integrity in the height of the water. We portaged our boats and paddled home sweet Chiswick…without much assistance from the tide due to the closed lock.