October 27th – I managed to finish work in the early afternoon and got myself and my bike to Lichfield for a lovely autumn sunny afternoon.
The old city and the sisters of the Vale looked gorgeous with the low sun and long shadows, as did Festival Gardens, the war memorial and Minster Pool.
Lichfield can be awfully up itself sometimes, but it’s a very beautiful place and it would be impossible not to love it – and a content afternoon mooching for gifts in the junk shops and charity emporia was a great way to unwind.
Some great weather at last!
August 20th – A much better, brighter day for me, but not the weather, which got worse as the day went on.
Out for a meal and a ride with someone I’d been missing while they were on holiday, a ride out to a local pub for a huge steak blowout and then a ride to work it off.
There was no wind, and I started in sun; but it soon became overcast and the rain started. But for once it didn’t matter. Returning home 50 miles later in darkness and soaking wet was actually a joy after a wonderful trip out.
Travelling up the A515 through Abbots Bromley, I noticed the modernist, brutal concrete Jubilee Memorial bench, which must be one of the first examples of a very particular municipal style; and then the Best Kept Village trophy sign, which lists all the winners since the competition in Staffordshire began, which is actually fascinating.
I do wonder why that’s in Abbots Bromley, though, and not somewhere else. It seems very… specific.
July 16th – He was singing to me as I cycled away from Telford Central station. It took me a while to spot him, in the crown of a nearby Douglas fir. His song was so joyful and life-affirming, the thought of the wee chap kept me smiling all morning.
If you have a song to sing, sing it like nobody is listening – because it’ll make the day of the person who unbeknown to you, is.
January 2nd – This was one of the things that cheered me up in Lichfield. The railings around Minster Pool. Someone with an idea, some blu-tak and a small pair of googly eyes. The expression is beautiful. I only noticed it by chance.
I don’t know who did the deed, but I thank you. You made me grin from ear to ear, and chased my black dog away. So now I’ve preserved your random act of happiness and shared it for posterity.
September 11th – In Darlaston Green, a sight to bring joy to the coldest, hardest heart – a single, 7 foot tall sunflower, growing right in front of a living room window. I imagine it to have been planted by a child under adult supervision – possibly a grandparent.
You can’t fail to adore this.