I have no idea how anyone managed to smack this street furniture so hard, or what direction they came from to do it. It's a pretty straight 30mph road right there, and this is only one side of the dual carriageway. Never seen so much as a near-miss there.
06 Dec 2020
I wasn't really feeling it when I set out today, on my first car-assisted wander. By the time I'd parked on Alma Vale Road in Clifton it was just starting to rain and I picked my way about in quite a desultory way. It felt strange, as I was very familiar with the area because I'd walked through it hundreds of times when I worked at the top of Whiteladies Road, and used to walk up the hill from Hotwells and through Clifton to get there, and back again, every day.
Then a complete coincidence seemed to make the change I'd been hoping for. I was standing taking a photo of Christ in the front garden of All Saints church when a couple of people walked out of the front door. I got talking with a lady I took to be part of the ministerial team, who invited me to come in and look around—something I'd always wanted to do on the morning commute. (I think we connected a bit when I recognised the name John Piper, who did the amazing windows—I learned about him while I was at Warwick, through his connections to Coventry Cathedral.
I left with much more of a spring in my step, wandered around the area a bit more, finally working out that the tennis courts I used to pass every morning are those of Clifton Lawn Tennis Club, and finally grabbing an excellent Hungarian sausage hot dog from the Budapest Cafe. I feel a lot better now than I did before I went out.
31 Jan 2021
I just nipped out to post a blood test (not Covid-related) and check that my car was okay, because I've not driven it for weeks. I was just going to walk up to Clifton Village, but I spotted the opportunity to re-park the car on my street rather than up the hill around the corner where it was, so instead I got in, intending just to move a hundred metres, but it turned over slowly before it started, and then warned me that the battery was very low and I should go for a long drive to recharge it.
So, I did my best, zipping up the A4018 to the motorway junction and back again, dropping off my blood at a postbox along the way, and while I did that, it started snowing. I noticed it was low tide, too, so when I got back home I headed back out again, this time on foot and with a camera so I could see if I could find any evidence of the Hot Well steaming.
I saw not a single sign of the Hot Well steaming, but it was quite a nice quick outing and I enjoyed my brief walk in the snow. Iike Hinton Lane, too, and while it's all old ground I was re-treading, I did at least get a picture or two with a bit of snow and some of the cold winter atmosphere of the trip, I think.
11 Dec 2021
I woke up on this Saturday with a headache, feeling like I'd not slept at all. As well as that, I'm still in some pain from the wisdom tooth extraction I had a few weeks ago. I moped about the flat for a while and then decided that the best thing to do was to force myself out on at least a small walk to get some fresh air and coffee.
Was there anywhere I could walk locally that I'd never been? Actually, yes! Although it's not a road, and I didn't walk it, there is actually one route that I've not travelled so far in my wanders. And it even had coffee near its far end...
There's something I've always loved about shooting through rainy ferry windows. I used to do it all the time on the commuter boats.
21 Dec 2020
Despite the weather, Sarah and Vik and I wandered around Ashton Court a bit as the sun rose. Not that you could really tell. Sadly, the bit we wanted to watch the sunrise from was closed, because people hadn't been treating the deer with appropriate respect. Ah well, at least it was some exercise.
Sadly we couldn't take photos from the usual spots at the ends of the Suspension Bridge; it's all railinged off, presumably to stop people gathering in any significant numbers. The pedestrian footways are now also one-way, and have these signs on to remind people of the rules to keep everyone apart as much as possible.
01 Mar 2021
Normally I don't have enough time in my lunch hour to get all the way around the harbourside. This is a shame, as Wapping Wharf is a great place to get coffee and a snack, but it's pretty much diametrically (perimetrically?) opposite me on the harbour. Today I had the day off, so I decided to go and knock off a few streets around Anchor Road that I'd not covered, as well as visiting the site of the Read Dispensary (well, one of them) and dropping into Mokoko for one of their astounding almond croissants. From there I came back along the south side, checking out the views from as much of the Chocolate Path as you can venture down at the moment, and swapping from Cumberland Road to Coronation Road at Vauxhall Bridge.
There's a lot of meh photos on this walk—my chief output from this project could be politely described as "record shots"—but a few turned out well, especially those of Vauxhall Bridge from the Chocolate Path, which reminded me how much of a loss the current closure of the Chocolate Path is to walkers and cyclists in Bristol.
I dream of a future like the past, where we just had one bin, but where everything from robots to enzymes at the recycling centre nevertheless manage to pull everything back apart.
Bower Ashton is an interesting little area just south of the river from me—in fact, the Rownham Ferry used to take people over from Hotwells to Bower Ashton, operating from at least the twelfth century to around the 1930s.
It's a strangely contradictory little area, with a cluster of old and new houses sandwiched in between the busy A-roads and significantly more industrial area of Ashton and the bucolic country estate of Ashton court roughly east to west, and also between Somerset and Bristol, north to south.
I've been around here before, mostly poking around Bower Ashton's arguably most well-known bit, the Arts faculty campus of the University of the West of England, but I'd missed at least Parklands Road and Blackmoors Lane, so I initially planned just to nip across briefly and wander down each in turn. On a whim, though, I texted my friends Sarah and Vik in case they were out and about, and ended up diverting to the Tobacco Factory Sunday market first, to grab a quick flat white with them, extending my journey a fair bit.
To start with, though, I nipped to a much more local destination, to see something that you can't actually see at all, the Gridiron...
(I also used this wander as a test of the cameras in my new phone. I finally upgraded after a few years, and the new one has extra, separate wide and telephoto lenses compared to the paltry single lens on my old phone. Gawd. I remember when speed-dial was the latest innovation in phones...)