The Mad Old Baggage

The Mad Old Baggage

More ramblings.....

16 notes


April 16th - Of course, the real star of this year’s Springs Got Talent is the blossom, which has been extraordinarily abundant this year. Apple and ornamental cherry line the cyclepaths of Telford. The falling petals are a delight, and shower any passing cyclist with confetti, like some groom of the spring.

Fantastic stuff.

3 notes

What a stunning day for a ride. Set off this morning, still a little chilly but the outer layers were soon discarded. 

I was lucky enough to see three herons this morning along the canal. The one pictured above had just caught its breakfast and wasn’t happy about having an audience  to watch it eat. 

I saw my first ducklings of the year. This prolific mother had 12 little ones with her.

The rape is now in full flower and looks amazing, bringing brilliance to the landscape.

I love this time of the year.

2 notes

It’s Show Time


It’s Show Time

Being an apparently seasoned blogger with a commitment to supplying the latest gossip and up to the minute updates I suppose it was expected of me to put something together with regard to my visit to the Practical Classics Renovation show at the NEC which occurred over the weekend. And so it was that I received my ticket in good time only to discover the day before that the ticket had gone…

View On WordPress

4 notes

A beautiful day for a walk through The Dingle, Hayhead Wood and down the canal to Rushall where a well earned pint was enjoyed at the Manor Arms. There will be an enormous harvest of wild garlic this year, it smells divine already and it isn’t even in flower. We saw at least half a dozen boats on the canal which is unusual along here apart from when BCN are holding a rally. A lovely day.

Filed under The Dingle hayhead wood daw end canal riddians bridge

1 note

My longest ride today since getting back on my bike; 17 miles and it felt good. I’m getting stronger and fitter. Might even tackle some hills soon! The little owl was showing again down at Riddian’s Bridge and I saw my first bluebell in flower this year, along the canal near Chasewater. Beautiful afternoon, warm and mostly sunny. Best of all? No twotty drivers today, just consideration and patience.

Filed under bluebell little owl riddians bridge

42 notes

Mom died three years ago this spring but her garden lives on and through that renewal each spring, so does she. Think she would be enjoying this spring as it seems to be so vigorous this year. Everything that I have taken a photograph of is something that she originally planted. It’s fair to say she loved colour :-) All photographs taken this morning.

Filed under spring mother garden aldridge colour

39 notes


April 9th - This… this, it’s remarkable.

I was shooting along the towpath, in the part of Spaghetti Junction where there’s a covered, cavernous tunnel over the canal. It’s dark under there; and eerie. It can be a little scary - there is no electric light there, and the only daylight is from the portals and small, irregular metre-square apertures in the roof, that let in shafts of sunlight. It’s a very odd, otherworldly spot.

I cycle through here generally without stopping. But today, a patch of yellow caught my eye in the admitted beam of light. 

I stopped. I backed up. I stood, open mouthed.

Hundreds, possibly more than a thousand daffodils in small jars. Each with water in, in the circle of light. Decaying, gone over. Placed with what must have been care, it would have taken a large effort to get them and the jars to that spot. It’s not accessible. It would have perhaps taken a boat… or some climbing. But why? Was it art? Obsessiveness? 

I was captivated. The pictures don’t do it justice. It’s stunning. 

When I got home, I looked at the pictures. I puzzled over them. I asked twitter: twitter knew. Thanks to @nebolland, @kenofski, @brumcyclist and @cybrum who enlightened me.

It turns out it’s art. It was carried out by artist, art world enfant terrible and extraordinary publicist Bill Drummond, once of the KLF. 

Read about Bill and his Birmingham project here.

You can say what you like, that had a massive impact on me. That was bloody genius. I have total respect for it.

16 notes

Another ride this morning taking in road, cycle route and canal. I was struck by how close to Walsall Town Centre there is wildness; this time at Mill Lane Nature Reserve. Half a mile from the town centre and I was watching buzzards flying overhead and catching jays nest building. marvellous.

The Arbo was looking gorgeous and in particular the wildlife garden run by two wonderful women, Jo and Jackie from the Friends of Walsall Arboretum Group. Volunteers, they do a fantastic job. I watched as wren added to her nest in their potting shed!

Then on my return I decided to see if the Little Owls were showing near Riddians Bridge (which remains looking worse for wear) and both were. One on a branch and the other in the middle of the oak. They made me smile.

So happy to be back cycling.

Filed under walsall arboretum Mill Lane LNR NCN5 little owl riddians bridge