Take a walk in the park

National Walk in the Park day inspires Elevate artist Stephanie Jalland to reflect on what the benefits of strolling around a local park.

Spring is here, chilly air, bright sunshine, hedgerows and trees alive with busy birds chirruping and whirring. Flowerbeds are beginning to bloom and it’s warm enough at times to wrap up and sit on a park bench for a while and watch the world go by. Tuesday 30th March 2021 is National Walk in the Park Day. A delightful celebration to join in with if you are lucky enough to live near a park. I love everything about a local park – from the municipal flower beds and neat paths, to the carefully placed benches to catch the sun. Most of all I love the life and activity and folk of all ages enjoying a little bit of paradise. The word ‘paradise’ comes from a Greek modification of an Iranian word paradeisos meaning ‘enclosed park’. A park is a paradise.

An elderly patient in bed once told me, when asked where she would like to go if she could? “Back to the park.” Her eyes lit up, and there and then, through her description, ‘back to the park’ we went: “I would sometimes borrow a pram from someone and take the children out for the afternoon. Sitting under a tree in the park with a book, looking at the flowerbeds and being able to walk away and still hear the music from the bandstand. Parks are always different; the layout, the planting and in those days the bands playing. I could tell from the music drifting in the air, which park it was coming from.”

Take a walk in the park if you can, even if it is in your mind and heart, it is so very good for you.


More from Stephanie and the Elevate artists

During the spring and summer 2020 Stephanie Jalland recorded her monthly reflections, sharing the sights and sounds around her home in Downton. You can listen to all of Stephanie’s monthly recordings here.

Download ‘Elevate your mood’ Issue 7 (pdf)

Send us your contribution

We love to include some of your own reflections in future posts and in our monthly print edition ‘Elevate your mood’ or quarterly printed tabloid ‘Take the time’. Why not write a few lines, try a poem or send us picture on the general theme of spring? Email to ArtCare or send to ArtCare, Block 29, Salisbury District Hospital, Salisbury SP2 8BJ.