The Chelsea Belladonna

I’ve been in a play!  I bet I’m the only English bulldog in Britain that has been in a play.

The Chelsea Belladonna

What happened was, Daddy was approached by Scotland’s Garden scheme, and asked if we would be willing to host Square Peg Productions presentation of “The Chelsea Belladonna” within the grounds at Inchmarlo.  Daddy said yes, so on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, the actors and their colleagues came and put on the play in the grounds of our 5 acre Alpine Garden.

“The Chelsea Belladonna”

This is a play written by Anna Carlisle about the life of Elizabeth Blackwell, born in Aberdeen who eloped with a reckless young husband, moved to London where he set up a whole range of bogus business ventures and ended up in debtor’s prison.  Elizabeth herself, with an arrangement with Sir Hans Sloane of the Chelsea Physic Garden, embarked on the creation and illustration of “A Curious Herbal” which became a veritable apothecaries’ bible both in Britain and abroad.

The two fabulous actors

We’ve got Jennifer’s youngest son Cameron staying with us so we all went out on Saturday afternoon, into the garden and assembled there for the actors to begin.  It was what is called a two hander, two actors only, Irene Allan who played Elizabeth Blackwell and Kenny Blyth who played both Alexander Blackwell and also Sir Hans Sloane.  Just as they began to start acting the rain came on so we all moved into the big marquee next to the Keyhole Garden which was specially erected for them.

Daddy and I sat on one side of the marquee, Mummy and Cameron on the other side.  Gosh it was exciting, it was the first play I’d ever been to and the two actors moved up and down in the marquee and Mummy said it was as though I was at a tennis match because my head was following them all time.  At one point they had to shout at each other and I did not like it and actually retreated between Daddy’s legs and went underneath the chair.  Later on I got more confident and came out again.  At one point Alexander came round and handed out little black bags with chocolate drops in them to all the spectators and he came over and gave one to Daddy and he said to me that I was a good boy and he gave one to me.  Daddy gave me some of the chocolate drops while we were watching.  It was terribly heavy rain and parts of the marquee roof started sagging, and one of the ladies had to go round with a broom pushing the pools of water out.  To do that she went round the back and came through the opening at the back of the marquee and when I saw somebody was coming through there, I barked and barked because it looked suspicious.  Daddy tried to quiet me and I quietened down but later on she did it again, so I barked again.

It was terribly exciting and Irene Allan and Kenny Blyth did a first class job.  At one part of the play the audience is invited to go up and finish some paintings which were on easels at the side of the marquee and Cameron went up and did it and I watched intently while this was going on.  Obviously, I’m not tall enough to go and hold a paintbrush and paint but despite this I enjoyed the play very much and all the actors and their colleagues are to be congratulated.  I repeat, I bet I’m the only English bulldog who’s seen a play and been spoken to by the actors.

Cameron and I go for walks in the Den and on Sunday we all went down to the beach.  Despite the fact it had been a very wet weekend, Aberdeen’s beach was deserted and the sand was lovely and soft.  I had a super time walking along the beach and chasing the seagulls. In the evening, I’m so tired I flake out because I’ve been so busy during the day.

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