Well we’ve got Clissold Park open at last, and a splendid function it was. The Clerk of the weather made quite a favour of withholding the rain, and once or twice just to let us know how much we were beholden to him, came uncomfortably near being ill-tempered and contrary; but all’s well that ends well, and beyond an epidemic of umbrellas just as Lord Rosebery began to speak, which epidemic was extremely short-lived, there was nothing to mar the proceedings.
Lord Rosebery made an admirable speech in reply to an eloquent, concise and historical address by Mr, Beck, and then having safely secured his satin copy of the ‘North London Guardian,’ he declared the park open, and shut his eyes and held his breath while the man in the “horseshoe” fired the bomb.
There was apparently some little difficulty about the key of the park, that the Parks Committee were to present—either the jeweller hadn’t finished it or the man that got Mr. Wilson’s watch had stolen it, or what was more likely there was a collusion about it—at any rate the Earl of Meath fished his latch key out of his waistcoat pocket, winked at Lord Rosebery and presented it to that gentleman with much grace. His lordship never moved a muscle, but slipped it into his pocket—and it i8 rumoured, kept it there—at any rate Lord Meath, who stayed out a bit late on the strength of the ‘Park opening,’ had to ring up the house before he could get in—and got a pretty scolding from Mrs. Meath, when he at length dared to crawl upstairs. This comes of practical joking !
At the next meeting of the South Hornsey Local Board someone will hear something that the reporters will be requested not to make a note of. The members for South Hornsey felt hurt at being excluded from the reserved seats, and no wonder, for as they justly remarked, South Hornsey gave £6,000 and we are outside—Islington gave £2,500, and there’s Stonelake on the Terrace interrupting the speakers as if the place belonged to him.
Some people are inclined to do good by stealth, and they take a tremendous lot of finding out. On Monday our Stoke Newington Rector, who has away of making it difficult to get a fair record of his good works, gave a tea to all the men employed in the Park. When the day’s work was over the men were called together, and found before them on Ion..’ tables an excel-lent repast. There was bread and butter, and cake, and sausage rolls, and lettuces and excellent tea, the whole flavoured with an excellent little religious service that was good in itself and the better for being short.
Mr. Beck was in Clissold Park among the public on Wednesday evening, and was sorely tried by the boys, who would throw stones into the lakes. It is a great pity that boys cannot behave themselves better, but nothing is more certain than this, that given boys, and stones, and water in proximity, and no “human boys” as Artemus Ward calls the animals, can resist the temptation. And should ducks be added to the materials for youthful recreation above quoted, then it is also absolutely certain that the boys will account for the sudden death of the ducks by declaring “that they must have got _____”