We recently adopted a dog from Shaggy Dog Rescue, her name is Lilly and she is the sweetest dog you'll ever meet. Lilly came to us with a weight problem and we immediately put her on a diet and a strict exercise regime. Walking Lilly has opened a new world of exploring opportunities; I thought I was pretty familiar with my Houston neighborhood of The Heights, but it turns out there are streets I had never visited, parks I had never seen!
I try to take a different route every day, but after several weeks of this routine, I have found myself treading specific streets which take us by my new favorite houses and gardens; one such street is Peddie, where one morning I came upon two houses set amid beautiful English gardens.
One of the houses, it turns out, is owned by a landscape architect, and this is evident in the care and inventiveness of the flower beds and gravel paths. Unlike most houses in the neighborhood, which are outfitted with a fence or a clear demarcation between the public and private realm, this front garden encroaches exuberantly onto the sidewalk, and welcomes the neighbors to partake in its beauty and its shade, with the charming placement of benches and follies:
Lilly enjoys this garden and its companion across the street, she enjoys the smells and the sights and if I am not careful she can get lost under the flowers searching for lizards and other critters:
Our neighborhood has a reputation of being a friendly place with a real sense of community, which I attribute to its traditional and walkable urban design, the use of porches in the houses, and the proximity between housing, culture, and entertainment. Walking Lilly is really allowing me to fully enjoy these aspects of The Heights and to discover its people who, I will confirm, are a friendly, interesting, diverse, and international bunch .
Lilly makes new friends.