October 20th – Heading home along the canal through Pleck, another of those rare treats: a rainbow.
It hadn’t rained here that I was aware of and I guess someone in east Walsall was getting an unexpected shower.
Hadn’t seen any for ages, and this is the third this month. You can’t beat a good rainbow.
March 2nd – That old British adage ‘If you don’t like the weather, wait ten minutes’ was never truer than today. I’d nipped out of work into Moxley on an errand, and the heavens opened – not with rain, as it had been periodically most of the morning, but huge, huge snowflakes.
I wanted to enjoy it. Riding was impossible as it was blinding. It was also rather wet. I took refuge in a cafe, ordered a brew and something to eat, and sat by the window until it cleared, just watching the snow fall.
Within 90 minutes or so, there was no trace it had even snowed. I wouldn’t have missed that for the world. There’s something very loose, transitory and impermanent about the weather of late. Not sure I like it much.
January 24th – An awful image, snatched at dusk through a hedgerow at Newtown, Brownhills: four red deer females loafing and grazing in the field between the canal and Chase Road.
After years of seeing them around Brownhills, I’m still not over the frisson of noticing them: they feel so out of place and exotic, even though this is their home.
A lovely thing on an otherwise dull day.
July 9th – It was an unexpected delight this evening to note the flowers along the Ring Road in Walsall, at the Arboretum Junction. Walsall Council always does this really well, and the lovely blooms are a joy to the heart.
My thanks to whoever plants and tends them – a lovely thing indeed.
June 25th – In Leicester today, and out early. This gave me chance to see my favourite patch of scrub, the embankment at South Wigston station.
I’m acutely aware that not many people have favourite patches of scrub, and this does mark me out as a little eccentric.
South Wigston is only a tiny dot of a suburban halt on a busy goods junction, and is totally unmanned. At some point, I think the green margins around the platforms and walkways were managed and planted, but haven’t been so for many years; the perennials that were planted here, plus some wild imports, run riot now all throughout the year, and reward me continually with colour, beauty and bounty.
It feels like I’m the only person ever to notice this; the only one ever to stop and watch the bees busy in the daisies, or bustling around the cotoneaster. Meanwhile, all around the sound of clanking industry, rumbling goods traffic and the joyful hubub of children from the nearby school.
It’s a wild place in the city, and I love it.