March 31st – The weather seems to be improving every day now – and despite the fact that my commute to work is on virtually empty roads, I’m still taking about the same time to ride it as the springtime attractions are far too beautiful to miss. This fantastic crop of daffodils cheer and welcome me every day on the industrial estate where I work.
March 13th – Friday came as a day that was decent to start, and then gifted rain in the afternoon. When I left work, the rain had cleared leaving a bright, sunlit evening on which to admire my beloved Twin Sisters, the two church spires of Church Hill in central Wednesbury.
I love to admire this view from Kings Hill Park. I love the hill, the space, the rooftops before the tree-lined ecclesiastical summit. I love to think of the hundred or more years these lovely buildings have watched over the industrial landscape and it’s changes below.
And I also wonder how many people like me have stood in this place and done exactly the same as me over the years. I love the way it’s all kind of eternally connected.
March 6th – The honeybees were very much awake, and busy, if a little ponderous. This one seemed OK with me being close, which isn’t something they tend to like later on.
These, remarkably enough, are phone photos. How far technology has come…
March 6th – The sun was shining, the day was almost warm, and at lunchtime, Kings Hill Park in Darlaston was the perfect place to chill out.
Spring flowers like crocuses and daffodils bobbed and waved in the breeze, and there was much bee buzz and birdsong… All to the accompaniment of an industrial Black Country town going about it’s Friday business.
A veritable riot, but a quiet one.
February 21st – In the wind and withering of a horrible Friday night commute, I crossed Bentley Bridge in Darlaston Green, and stopped to answer a text. looking to my left, I thought the cherrypicker lifts in the yard down the canal looked almost prehistoric in the way they caught the yard lights.
Years ago, this would have been a busy canal, with Garringtons drop forging factory either side – the narrows still visible in the distance where there was a drop bridge between the two yards.
Today, it was much cleaner, and quieter, apart from the wind and the sound of rain on the canal.
How times change.
February 20th – Despite yet another foul day, the flowers of Kings Hill Park in Darlaston have decided the time is ripe and are putting on a thoroughly gorgeous show.
Miniature diffs, crocuses and snowdrops mingle, with the full size days getting ready for act 2, followed later by the fantastic tulips in the planters.
With such resolve to being beautiful, one can really lift the sadness of another day of bad weather.
February 7th – A test journey to work was tough, but so worth it: A stop for a break and a snack in Kings Hill Park rewarded me with gorgeous spring flowers.
It felt today, in that moment, that they’d made the extra special effort because they knew I was coming, that their admirer and champion was back.
Happily, the sun came too, and warmed my face.
Some things you just wish you could bottle for the darker days.
In Kings Hill Park on a wet, grey morning, flowers are coming – from humble, enduring daisies to the first crocuses (yellow. Why are yellow always the first?) with the taller, bolder spring flowers now developing well too.
Spring is showing. It’s starting to come now, and whatever happens in the next month, soon it will be here, with it’s warmer, lighter days, flowers and green.
I am so ready for it.
Not hugely populous yet, just the early ones, the advance party; but strong, bold and yet delicate. There are here in enough numbers not to be a fluke, and instead cheering me with the realisation that there will soon be glades of these gorgeous flowers all over the place, and that yes, it may still be dark, mostly wet and chilly, but spring? Yeah, it could well be a thing.
January 15th – Passing through Darlaston’s Victoria Park on a journey back from the hospital in Walsall late morning, I met this tidy, glossy coated very black cat, languid and sleepy on a fencepost at the Wednesbury Road end of the path.
He wasn’t particularly pleased that I disturbed his sleep, but welcomed my chatter, chin and ear tickles, for the first few minutes barely opening his eyes.
A cat of clearly senior years, I think he must live on the new esate over the back.
And adorable, aloof yet affectionate fusspot, whose acquaintance I was pleased to make.