This morning Margie and I took a walk around Highgate Hill. Just checking on things that have changed, and things that have not, while we were away. We sadly counted the old houses being demolished in Dornoch Terrace, and glumly inspected where The Gully used to be.
But there were good things too. The City Council has been at work in the little park at the top of the hill. Paths and seats have been repaired. The gardens have been tended.
At the highest point in this park stands a concrete pedestal. There used to be a brass disk on it, engraved with pointers and text identifying the landmarks — the river, the city hall, distant mountains. Years ago the disk was carried off by vandals and, for most of the time I have lived here, the top of the pedestal has been bare.
Now at last, the pedestal has been repaired, and the disk replaced by a sundial.
It’s a cast bronze sundial of conventional design and middling quality. So far, so good.
But we have a problem. The pedestal stands inside (that is, shaded by) the beautiful little viewing pavilion. What were they thinking of?