March 30th – I had to nip to Walsall at noon. I was tired from a very demanding week, but the weather was nice and the riding surprisingly easy.
I don’t mind Walsall these days – I long ago resolved my conflict with my memories and learned to embrace the place anew. It’s never been a bad town. It’s just that many who live here hate it because it isn’t the same as when they were young.
Of course it isn’t – all places change, and what folk resent is not the change in the town, but the change in themselves, I find.
I pushed my bike up Church Hill and admired the view, I plodded around the town below aimlessly but enjoying it immensely. I stopped for coffee in the sun. Then out on the canal to call at Sainsburys in Reedswood, where I noticed the last (nearly) whole remnant of Reedswood Power Station – the old pedestrian bridge over the long gone railway, now orphaned and fenced out of use between a pub and and the retail park.
Walsall is haunted by it’s own past, let alone the half-imagined one it has projected upon it.