#365daysofbiking Catching the leaves:
October 26th – Heading to Hortonwood from Telford Station on the cycleway, I crossed the motorway bridge to Priorslee and my attention was caught by the sunlight catching the turning leaves.
Motorways are not beautiful but they do have a particular charm, especially in autumn when their embankments, generally undisturbed havens for wildlife, become especially beautiful.
April 11th – Over in Telford on a misty grey and damp morning, crossing the motorway on the cycleway bridge I noticed that the blackthorn blossom was in full swing.
One of the earlier tree blossoms of spring, it’s usually a pointer to better weather. Often mistaken for hawthorn, it turns hedgerows and copses white for a time, but before the leaves are fully out.
It shows it’s real beauty on a sunny day. Ah well, better luck next time.
March 9th – I paid a brief visit to Telford mid afternoon, still bathed in gentle, welcome sunshine. Whilst heading over to Hortonwood, I noticed that the blackthorns on the motorway embankment were all blossoming.
A beautiful sight in a most unexpected place.
January 20th – Then, as if by magic, the light appeared to save my soul.
Or at least, that’s how it felt.
I set out early on a frosty morning I wasn’t prepared for, and had a few interesting moments on black ice. But there was one notable feature as I rode to Darlaston at the same time as every other day this week – The sky, gently lightening to the east. It filled my heart with hope – and the roofs of Darlaston looked gorgeous against a bright dawn. This was much more like it.
Mid morning, I popped to Telford on a morning beautifully draped in a thin, opalescent mist. From the train it hung low over the countryside and was beautiful, and even the M54 wore it well.
Just as I thought there was no end, a sign of a new beginning. I saw the light, and it was good.
October 27th – I had to nip to Priorslee to pick something up. The trail crosses the M54 via a pedestrian/cycle bridge that twangs gently when you cross it, and resonates with every large lorry that passes underneath.
From the bridge, the embankments of the motorway were displaying wonderful colour even on this dull day, and the view to my destination looked almost bucolic and mysterious.
Autumn has it’s moments.
June 20th – Readers seem to be enjoying the wildflower theme of late, so today I decided to continue with it. Ragwort gets a bad press, somewhat unfairly. A member of the daisy family, it’s host to a number of butterfly, moth and insect species. Yes, it’s toxic to horses, but both have co-exesited for many centuries, and modern scares about horse deaths appear to be wildly overstated. Ragwort is a very hardy, tough plant with beautiful yellow flowers, The buds are particular works of organic engineering, too. Sadly, all too often overlooked for less common specimens, it brings a dash of colour to field, scrub and verge throughout summer. These lovely examples were growing on a patch of scrub by the M54 embankment in Telford.