BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

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

Posts tagged ‘sunset’

#365daysofbiking Golden years

August 5th – I was at work in Birmingham, late. I came back on a Lichfield bound train at sunset, and stumbled out tired in a beautiful, quiet golden hour.

I’ve been riding this weary journey from work for years along Lynn Lane. Always the same story: Summertime, working late, fatigue. Climb the long, steep steps up from the platform at Shenstone carrying my bike. Look down the lane towards home and the setting sun. Become struck with the sheer beauty of the hour.

And for all those years, the joy of it, and the love for it never wanes.

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#365daysofbiking Exorcising ghosts

July 7th – The sunset was the culmination of a glorious golden hour.

Birmingham and Aston shone and shimmered in the gathering dusk.

A train caught the sky and was golden: Britannia fought a pitched battle on the former hotel roof with the TV antennas. The skylines and canal spoke of quiet dignity, worship and daily life.

I spent many hours as a young man in these streets, on the canals and at this station. The ghosts that haunt me here are not scary, or hostile, but warm and comfortable like enveloping sheets of memory.

My place, my past, present and future.

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#365daysofbiking The imperfection of being


July 6th – Feeling down, out for an evening ride to cheer myself up: Just a short loop up to Chasewater at dusk.

My stomach had been bad and I wasn’t feeling great, but the evening light did make me feel better at least.

Sometimes, in summer when the weather’s not great and you’re stuck in, it can be worse than being stuck in on a grey winter’s day. The feeling of a chance lost, of summer passing without you, can be painfully real.

But today, the sunset was beautiful, Chasewater and the canal did it’s best to catch my eye, and I remembered that after all, tomorrow is another, usually better, day.

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#365daysofbiking Long days

June 19th – Working long hours on a difficult project at the moment and I returned one in a pleasant summer dusk after rain had passed.

The towpaths were still a bit wet, so I headed up to Anchor Bridge and down the High Street. In doing so, I caught the setting sun over the canal.

When work is tough, that ride home is like a mental breath of fresh air and provides a buffer between work and home.

And a chance for peace. It was good to be near home.

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#365daysofbiking Different light

May 11th – A busy day elsewhere, and a late ride out saw me cross the Pier Street Bridge in Brownhills at dusk.

This time next week it’ll be busy with boats for the all-weekend Brownhills Canal Festival, but right now it was quiet and peaceful, which only the gentle chatter of waterfowl breaking the silence.

No matter what time of day you come here, there’s always a defferent light to make it uniquely lovely.

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#365daysofbiking The last of the light


May 4th – On an evening with a very bad IBS episode, with stomach cramps impeding my progress significantly, I took a ride to Chasewater in absolutely gorgeous light.

The canal, my favourite tree at Home Farm, Sandhils and the sunset itself were a real tonic and made my tired, aching body feel much better.

Sometimes, actually getting out and making the effort makes you feel better: Especially when it’s such a beautiful day.

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#365daysofbiking The magic hour

April 21st – I was, it has to be said, physically battered from the previous day – my body is clearly raging and takes longer to recover now than it did. On a pleasant Sunday I pottered over to relatives in Burntwood and returned in a gorgeous golden hour and stopped as I laboured back up the hill to admire the oilseed rape fields of Hammerwich in the dying sunlight.

The recovery ride was pleasant and enjoyable but hard work. But in this light it was a joy.

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