#365daysofbiking Bitter gourds:
November 7th – One of the odder recurring themes of this blog over the years has been the errant, discarded pumpkin. Whether is’s apparently forgotten in inner city Acocks Green, cruelly cast aside on a country lane or just randomly left on a canal bank, I see more of these forlorn gourds abandoned than any other.
These otherwise untouched, whole specimens – that would have made a decent meal for several people (and it looks like a fox already had tried and got bored with one) were inexplicably lying around in Victoria Park, Darlaston.
April 10th – Always good to spot workboat Essington about on the local canals, even on a grey damp morning like today. Essington is the boat used by the mainly volunteer litter picking crews from the Canal and River Trust, who patrol stretches of local canal cleaning up the banks and water.
Today, the boat was moored in Pleck.
And after recent weather here, by heck we need it with the washed-in trash that’s everywhere at the moment.
The crew were clearly on their break – but my best wishes, and thanks go out to them for making the canals nicer for all of us. Bravo!
April 18th – A devil of a day beset by difficulties at work. I rode off early in the morning into an unpleasant headwind with a bad stomach and the day didn’t improve much. I was distracted on the way home by a mechanical issue, and just took these photos of the new pond at Clayhanger, which is greening up beautifully at the moment, but is suffering a little for being a hanging-out place for local kids who are littering a little.
Hopefully in a few weeks the slopes around the pool will be alive with orchids again, as they were last year. Sadly, it’s a bit too wet down there at the moment to investigate.
Repairs carried out at home, I’m hoping for a better day tomorrow – it wouldn’t be hard to achieve.
October 29th – As I noted a few days ago, Autumn is a beautiful, but hazardous season. The leaf littler on the cycleways is wonderful to look at but very slippery, and is now turning to a very soapy, lubricant mulch. Added into this are small twigs, various needles and fallen berries and fruits, often concealing potholes and other hazards.
I normally mash up here hard and come back downhill even faster, but with conditions as they are, I take this route very gently at the moment, and avoid using the front brake as much as possible.
June 23rd – A lovely commute, and at last, on a warm, sunny, almost wind-free day. And I was cheered as a rode along the canal in Pleck to see the Canal and River Trust rubbish collection boat operating. The chaps on board had long poles and grabbers and were hauling debris out of the reeds, off the embankments and from the water.
It wasn’t until I got closer that I realised from their Hi-Vis that the lads doing the graft were volunteers. Well done to them, and thanks. True public spirit right there.
May 27th – I guess a lost balloon is a reflection on the sadness of things, and that woeful feeling of loss a child develops when something is gone for good.
But it’s also a symbol of pollution.
I see lots of balloons as I ride around – town or country trapped in hedges, trees, verges, fields and scrub – and also in the canal. Eventually, it will deflate, and lurk, another piece of plastic detritus waiting to choke the wildlife and add to the building polymer poison time bomb.
I know it’s not a popular view but I wish these things we rarer.
October 11th – There’s a type of littering prevalent at the moment that’s really annoying me. It consists of collecting the rubbish in your vehicle neatly in a carrier bag, then when full, tying it in a knot and just chucking it out of the window at your first opportunity.
If you do this you are a moron with no respect for others, and are beneath contempt.
I see bags of this rubbish blighting lanes and dual carriageways; urban backstreets and country verges. This was in Little Wyrley.
There’s something very selfish about a mentality that keeps their vehicle tidy, but can’t be bothered to do the same for the wider environment. Just how hard is it to wait until you’re home and popping it in the dustbin?
Scum. Nothing more, nothing less. Filthy, littering scum.