BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

On a bike, riding somewhere. Every day, rain or shine.

#365daysofbiking A ghost of a chance

Thursday April 1st 2021 – Riding home late afternoon, I spotted this amusing tribute to science by local street artist Ghost on a canalside wall in Pleck, Walsall. It’s beautifully executed, and marks a trend of the pandemic often inspiring street art. I think if covid has done anything positive, it seems to have engaged street art and counterculture in a way that current affairs have generally failed to do for two decades.

But that’s a bit of a side issue. This post was suck in draft from April until Christmas because I was so undecided what to do with this journal. As I noted in my last post, I was tired, and ill. And not able to raise the energy to continue it at the time with the passion it needed. So I entered three quarters of a year of writers and creative block.

The reason for April 1st being significant is that on this day in 2011, I started this journal as part of the worldwide #30daysofbiking project, prodded into taking part by fellow utility cyclist and top Dutchperson Rene Van Baar on Twitter. 30Days was a commitment to ride every day of April. It still happens, and one thing that’s always amused me is that the organisers over in the US, upon hearing that I just carried the project on for years, showed nothing but indifference. I never quite worked that out.

I didn’t quite do a decade continuously though, over new year the following Christmas I missed two days due to a really nasty bout of food poisoning – but other than that, I rode every single day for a decade, and documented every day with a photo post (or occasionally, a bit of video). I’m proud of that. There are a lot of words in the archive. A lot of images; a lot of my life, and this area as well as others I visited along the way.

My first post was matter of fact, and terse. It took me a month to develop my style. You can read it here.

Since then there have been 6,955 entries, and somewhere around 11,000 media items – mostly images, but around 70 videos and even the odd bit of audio.

So with all that behind me, where am I going now?

…Nowhere, that’s where.

I’m just going to post when I have something to share. So it’s be less frequent, but I will be aided by a riding companion whom many of you will already be familiar with, who deserves a voice and to be heard too.

This means hopefully there will be less filler, and more passion. I think you’ll prefer it in the long run, And it’ll be easier for me to keep up.

One thing that has changed in recent years is street photography has got really hard. Nobody used to bat an eye if they saw you with a camera. These days, you get noticed. Curtains twitch. People ask what you’re doing. You half expect to be on the local neighbourhood watch group as a suspicious individual. So the new format will be probably more picturesque stuff I think.

I find that a bit sad but it’s the way the world is at the moment.

So, are you coming with me? Let’s ride into the blue together… Hopefully it’ll stop raining soon.

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2 Responses to “#365daysofbiking A ghost of a chance”

  1. Morturn

    This has been a super blog, interesting, entertaining, and most importantly inspiring. I ride a lot more as a result of this and it has also encouraged me to also put pen to paper and inconvenience a few elections showcasing my walks with The Pointer. It been a super journey traveling with you and an experience that has made me richer.

    Nothing in this world is permanent; impermanence is an undeniable and inescapable fact of human existence from which nothing that belongs to this earth is ever free. Impermanence and change are thus the undeniable truths of our existence.

    It is enriching, fulfilling and enlightening to have something to say, but not so much so when you just feel obliged to say something. You have to know when to leave the party. So as much as I have loved and been inspired by #365daysofbiking and will miss it dearly. I will look back fondly on what we have had and look forward to engaging with what is to come.

    Thank you for everything.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  2. David Manship

    Been following your 365 for 5ish years and loved it. Lots of your local pictures stir thoughts of been there seen that but not with your creative view. The longer rides give me something to aim for. It’s also given me the motivation to get out and explore when I’ve lost my riding mojo. Whatever you do I’ll love to follow it. Thanks for what you have written and for whatever is to come.

    Like

    Reply

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