BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

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

Posts tagged ‘urban’

#365daysofbiking On a springtime tip

April 16th – I had to nip to Tipton at lunchtime. Just as the rain came, which was a bit of a bugger if I’m honest.

Still, I donned waterproofs; the day seemed to be warming up and the wind had died away, so the steady drizzle wasn’t a bind.

Then, as I arrived in the town centre, this astonishing bed of spring flowers; a riot of colour on a grey, miserable afternoon.

I don’t know who planted them or who looks after them, but my goodness they are spectacular.

Take a bow, whoever you are – and thank you.

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#365daysofbiking A case of scurvy

April 11th – One of the odder ecological phenomena of urban Britain is the proliferation of Danish scurvy grass. This salt loving plant is what gives verges and roadsides the white fringe right now, with this hardly, pollution resistant little plant flowering.

Danish Scurvy Grass likes salt, and thrives in the ‘burn zone’ beside roads that are gritted in winter, where the roadways splashes brine onto the verge. One of the few plants not top be hindered by these hostile conditions, its white flowers can be seen by many urban roads this time of year.

There really is a place for everything it seems.

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#365daysofbiking Fresh

April 10th – My second home Darlaston is looking splendid in it’s spring jacket at the Monet.

How many people hear the name and think of grimy, angry industry, smell, grim urbanisation and pollution? The reality is way, way different.

Darlaston is a beautiful little Black Country town, with astounding architecture, great parks right in the centre, and a phenomenal history.

Go look – there’s no better toime than spring.

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#365daysofbiking An venerable old lady

April 8th – Returning home at gone 7pm in grey light, I spotted this elderly lady watching me from the open space in North Street.

I suspect she’d been having a standoff with a factory cat from the yard over the road.

She looks in good condition and wasn’t fazed by me at all.

Beautiful animal, and a pleasure to see.

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#365daysofbiking Slippery customer

March 30th – Spotted on a recently cropped tree stump near the canal by Birchills locks, some impressively horrid-looking slime mould fungus that looks for all the world that it might spring to life and try to take the country by force at any minute.I’ve not seen any of this stuff for years. It was clearly living off the tree sap and the general moisture on the stump.

Stomach-churning and fascinating at the same time.

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#365daysofbiking Subterranean sunny station blue

March 28th – Always nice to get a glimpse of blue, sunny sky from the dark platforms at New Street Station in Birmingham.

Today I was waiting for a connection early, and although there were loads of trains, there weren’t seemingly too many people around. I killed time with a snack, and peered up out of the tangle of steel, concrete, wires and machinery to the surrounding architecture – always fascinating, always in transition.

And then beyond that to a blue sky – and even in this urban morass devoid of anything natural – the promise of a beautiful, sun-dappled spring.

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#365daysofbiking Cherry amore

March 26th – A full three weeks earlier than last year, the cherry blossom is coming out on the industrial estate where I work.

Returning from Telford at lunchtime, I noticed the pinky white flowers catching the sunlight. Then I looked around, and all the other ornamental cherries on the estate that I could see were flowering similarly.

Against the fine china blue sky it was a wonderful, uplifting sight.

This spring is early, but I’m not complaining about that at all! I just wish it would warm up a little now.

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#365daysofbiking Sleepwalking

March 22nd – Working very late, a 14 hour day. I returned through a somnambulant Park Street in Walsall, the pavers shining in the electric light.

Walsall gets an awful lot of stick in some quarters, but looking tonight at the clean street and welcoming light, I was reminded that this isn’t a bad place, for all it’s detractors.

It certainly felt like home tonight.

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#365daysofbiking Reconstruction time again

March 23rd – On a short late afternoon ride out on a cold, windy afternoon, I noticed the Watermead swan couple were making preparations for another family, just by the canal basin and houses around the canal bend from the canoe centre.

These two birds have raised many cygnets to maturity in recent years and it’s good to see them back.

However, the mail is somewhat formidable and canoeists, kayakers, passing dogs and waterfowl will need to be careful: This lad protects his family aggressively.

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