London. One of those crisp, cold winter afternoons. Waning blue sky. Profiteroles of cloud kissed apricot and cream by the setting sun. Chestnut and plane trees standing sentinel, stripped of their leaves, naked to wind and frost, the curling remains of their summer glory coppering the wet grass before being consumed by slow-burning bonfires, fragrant spirals of blue-grey smoke rising among their arms and stretched-out fingers. A slowly falling mist. In the distance the lights of Queensway and the Bayswater Road, gradually awakening. The brighter they became, the darker the afternoon, the more mysterious the park. No longer Kensington Gardens but a magic forest of the imagination. The mighty horse, muscled and sinuous, that was Watts' Physical Energy became less an Edwardian monument to 'restless impulse' seeking 'the still unachieved', more a giant, prancing Asgardian battle-charger breathing flame and life across northern ice-fields. Laid out before the Palace, Queen Caroline's Round Pond was less an ornamental lake, more an endless ocean of remote horizons, choppy waves and sheltered bays lying leeward. Fleets of all kind, all flags, sailed its waters. From yawls to junks, Endeavour yachts to marbleheads, clippers to destroyers, Vospers to submarines. In summer, with the still, warm, odorous rising of weeds and grasses, the Pond became a Sargasso Sea ensnaring dreams, drawing in our ships to a watery grave. In winter, it turned into an Arctic sheet beneath the stars and the planes into Heathrow. In summer we fished its depths, netting sticklebacks and occasionally more aggressive varieties. In winter, surrounded by skaters, we walked the waters of our fantasy.