I was lucky enough to accompany Emilia to the Chelsea Flower Show again this year. It is such a brilliant event (I'd never been before last year's visit and am now a convert) so was really looking forward to going again this year.
I'd heard some weather reports of light showers, so I packed my micro brolly in my handbag - and even a scarf on the outside chance I might need it - and set off in my delightful navy maxi dress and union flag (suitably patriotic) pumps ready to swish around the gardens.
We saw some amazing displays. The creativity and fun of the Afternoon Tea garden was a particular favourite.
I've always had a thing about flowers hanging upside down ever since my flatmate and I hung a grid of gerberas across our living room ceiling for a spring party we were throwing. So, this stand was one that also really appealed to me.
We were happily checking out the sweet pea stall when we heard the first crack of thunder. And then the rains came. Luckily we were in the pavilion as this was no light shower. A full on hail storm then followed as we cowered inside, praying it would easy up.
Eventually it did, but we were freezing, so decided to make a break for the refreshments stands to get a tea/coffee. Of course as Emilia was (marginally!) more likely to be photographed than me, I donated the micro brolly to her and wore my scarf around my head as we darted off. Neither of us particularly well protected from the rain!
What I hadn't reckoned on was the state of the ground. Mud. Wet, sandy, squishy mud. I am no amazonian, so my maxi was trailing through it and sucking up muck and water to about shin height. Eugh. You know that feeling when your feet and legs are cold and wet and you can't get away from it? That. My pumps and tops of my feet were filthy!
Finally it dried up and we made it to the L'Occitane garden which was simply lovely. Exactly how I wish my garden at home could look. Instead mine is a shameful barren wasteground! Emilia then posed for photographs looking stunning and, ever the professional, you would never have known it had just been pouring down!
I'm already looking forward to hopefully visiting again next year, but I will take away two valuable lessons I've learnt from Chelsea this year.
1) When attending flower shows, always err on side of caution and wear sensible, all weather shoes and nothing too long!
2) I must plant something in my garden!!!