BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

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

Posts tagged ‘urban’

#365daysofbiking Splendid isolation

May 8th – I’d had to ride into Brum to check out something for work. Public transport is unusable, and the day was lovely so I rode all the way on the canal.

At Aston Junction there’s a garden ruin of mown grass just by the canal bridges there, and within, I noticed an artist.

Clearly busy under his straw hat, he seemed engrossed in his work.

I didn’t think he had noticed me at all, and the dedicated, solitary pursuit of his art was fascinating and just a little sad.

As I left, I bid him a cheery goodbye and without looking up, he wished me a good ride.

Lockdown is doing odd things to us as a society, and I kind of like it.

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#365daysofbiking On the waterfront

April 16th – Life may be on hold at the moment, but Brownhills has been steadily changing and improving for a few years now, and I can’t see that process slowing up much, even with the current unpleasantness caused by coronavirus.

A few short years ago the view up the canal from Silver Street towards Catshill Junction would have been blighted by the empty market place and waste ground where Silver Court Gardens once stood, a set of five tenement blocks that really were quite grim.

But now the view of houses and trees in blossom over limpid, peaceful water is a world away from those bad days.

And I continue to watch my community evolve.

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#365daysofbiking Positive junction

March 12th – You can always tell a decent traffic improvement scheme by the way nobody mentions it after it’s completed.

The improvements at Shire Oak and Streets Corner took ages to complete, and were not without pain but the improvement in the performance of both is marked, and I’ve heard few moans about these seemingly well planned and executed safety upgrades.

So I think probably the work has been appreciated.

I do know one thing for sure: Streets Corner is still oddly beautiful by night.

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#365daysofbiking Downtown lights

February 28th – Brownhills High Street. The rain was still perched upon my world as I came home, looking for a takeaway and some solace in the gloom.

A couple of minutes later I met an old pal, we dived into Costa for a coffee, and rolled the years back.

Brownhills isn’t nearly as depressed as it was; things are improving, slowly.

It almost looks beautiful in the rain. Or have I got meteorological Stockholm syndrome again?

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#365daysofbiking Outreach

February 21st – In the wind and withering of a horrible Friday night commute, I crossed Bentley Bridge in Darlaston Green, and stopped to answer a text. looking to my left, I thought the cherrypicker lifts in the yard down the canal looked almost prehistoric in the way they caught the yard lights.

Years ago, this would have been a busy canal, with Garringtons drop forging factory either side – the narrows still visible in the distance where there was a drop bridge between the two yards.

Today, it was much cleaner, and quieter, apart from the wind and the sound of rain on the canal.

How times change.

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#365daysofbiking Resolute

February 20th – Despite yet another foul day, the flowers of Kings Hill Park in Darlaston have decided the time is ripe and are putting on a thoroughly gorgeous show.

Miniature diffs, crocuses and snowdrops mingle, with the full size days getting ready for act 2, followed later by the fantastic tulips in the planters.

With such resolve to being beautiful, one can really lift the sadness of another day of bad weather.

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#365daysofbiking Hello, you

February 18th – on my way through Pleck, I spotted this clump of daffodils, a welcome addition to my currently grey and grim commute.

I note daffodils are gradually emerging in parks, hedgerows and gardens, and not just the traditional early patches I’m familiar with – they seem a bit early this year but I’m not sure if they really are.

Whatever they are, they are most welcome. Spring is definitely here when these beautiful characters appear.

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#365daysofbiking – The ends of the day, beginning

February 12th – Really getting back into the swing now, but tiredness is a big issue, it has to be said.

Up at stupid o’clock to get a train to Leicester, not many were around New Street Station when I arrived before the commuting day was really kicking off.

I like this place empty, it’s atmospheric and oddly beautiful.

All I needed now was a train…

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