BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

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

Posts tagged ‘Holland Park’

#365daysofbiking All things must pass

Monday January 11th 2021 – Life is grim in the UK right now: The pandemic is claiming higher and higher numbers of people every day, and the economy is taking sustained hits from it and Brexit. It’s taking superhuman levels of self discipline to be able to just listen to a radio news bulletin.

But all is not lost: The darkest hour comes before dawn and the vaccine is being distributed quickly and professionally. It’s nice to see science working so well.

In the midst of all this I ride my bike to and from work as usual, in an often alienating world of masked up, hostile fellow citizens. Some days it feels like normality will never return.

But it will, and the spring flowers know it. Jack in the Green has tapped the ground with his cane, and everywhere you look fresh green shoots are optimistically shooting skyward, in anticipation of the warming spring sun.

They know like we must all  know deep down, that these cold, grim days will pass. And so they will.

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#365daysofbiking Downtown lights

Sunday November 15th 2020 – As another wet, grim weekend drew to a close without a decent ride I pottered down the Black Path and stopped to watch the local fox travel back to his nearby set carrying a discarded chip wrapper, sadly too hastily for a picture.

It’s been a few weeks since I last came down here and the leaves will soon be all gone, instead littering the path and creating a slippery but fun hazard for the unwary cyclist.

It’s stark, but a beautiful spot at night with a surprising amount of wildlife.

Can we have some decent weekend weather soon, please?

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#365daysofbiking A gentle fall

Monday, October 19th 2020 – The autumn is now in full swing, and the leaves are dropping at a rate.

Combined with the rains, it can make cycling hazardous as the leaf litter turns into a slippery goop that steals wheels and makes for interesting braking.

No such concerns on the Black Bath beside Holland Park, however, where the lights, sky and seasonal detritus gently combine for some great dusk colour.

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#365daysofbiking Living in another world

January 25th – Of course, I came back through Chasewater for a reason. I wanted to get Chasewater and the area surrounding in mist, when I actually had time to experiment.

As it happened the experiments pretty much all failed, but some notable successes – mainly by accident – were evident. The glass-hard Nine-Foot pool; Chasewater pier looking like something from a film set. The curing wall of LED streetlights over the distant sweep of the deserted M6 Toll. The eerie otherworldliness of the Black Path with its sodium and skeletal trees.

It did indeed seem like another world, but in that one my photographic talents sadly remained as erratic and hit and miss as in this one.

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#365daysofbiking The colours of the night

November 3rd – I was hoping the inversion had settled on Chasewater, as that can be stunningly beautiful – but sadly, it was as clear as a bell, and the same went for Brownhills too.

My companion and I busied ourselves with long exposure shots of the beautiful, deep sunset, which was sadly short lived but enchantingly purple, and of the skyline and clouds which were really quite pronounce at times.

Returning down the Black Path through Holland Park, the sodium lights there mixed beautifully with the autumn colours to make a very isolated, spooky place hauntingly beautiful.

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#365daysofbiking Waxcap waning

October 12th – A pretty little ‘shroom spotted in the leaf litter under those trees on The Parade: The blackening wax cap or witches hat. Starting light in colour they can be anything from yellow to deep red. As they age they get darker and darker until the point of decay.

Not particularly toxic but not really edible, the wax cap is a diverse family that are absolutely beautiful and well worth looking out for.

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#365daysofbiking Things in common

October 12th – Little sleep, online life getting to me and feeling tired. Not a great recipe – but a potter into town for shopping and a coffee was welcome. I headed to The Parade which is always beautiful in autumn, and although too early for the real show, it was still pretty impressive and a good tonic.

I remember this majestic trees being saplings. They are pretty much as old as I am.

And today, I felt very old indeed… Certainly too old to be working into the wee small hours.

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#365daysofbiking Hard of herring

September 26th – Crossing the Parade in Brownhills near the Fullelove Memorial Shelter, there had been oddly enough, a landing of herring gulls, presumably on their way between local water and one of the several landfills where they feed.

These really are huge birds, and quite aggressive in appearance.

It’s hard not to associate these surprisingly complex birds with the sea – but with abundant food locally and planty of water, this one has probably never seen the sea.

An odd feature of local wildlife.

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August 11th – On the Black Path, it felt like autumn. On the canal it rained like autumn.

I hope the sun comes back soon. I feel bereft.

January 3rd – Returning to Brownhills, there was a lovely, low sun at lunchtime so I visited the row of trees that make for such great autumn pictures during the leaf fall.

It’s fair to say they look totally different undressed, but no less beautiful.

Every time I see these, I can’t help but remember the when I was a kid, I remember these saplings being planted. 

Oh, how that makes me feel old…