Competion for car parks ?

Not a thing that I know of…. but probably exists … what type of categories …. largest smallest  generating the most profit providing the most services?   All possible.  What about the category best situation?  Even that may need subsections:

Rural ,urban, suburban, private , totally enclosed, subterranean  , multistorey …


Well in the public park and ride category I would like to nominate the park and ride for the City of Bath.  It does need you to look beyond the immediate car park provision.  And in fact in the pouring  rain on Monday the ground was a sloppy sandy mess, and the week before the failure of the public unisex toilets to open despite piling in the money.  But beyond those the car park sits sheilding  a playing field and beautiful views across the valley . Not an obvious attraction though  when parking . Because mostly thoughts are on getting to the City.

Leaving  Bath the road takes me along a minor road twisty and relatively narrow with banks and hedges on either side . Not single track . But if I were walking one I would be worried about quick escape routes from oncoming traffic.. no verges. 

Leaving Bath early evening I was just in a slow trail . One of those where you can be stopped and wind down the window and take in the sights, sounds and smells of the place. I was so close to the hedge I could have taken the hawthorn for tea… the bread and cheese leaf. The traffic line was mostly so slow it was stopped for ages between moving  just a car’s  length so with the window down I could take a picture … to be loaded up and shared

Image to come … Close up of hedge .. Hawthorn leaves at close quarters ..










Double commute

Bright and  early, such a beautiful start to the day. Out of ordinary today as it involves trains. But first to get to the station so car to park and ride or bus, then which bus ?

All choices needed to get to station for at least 730 and pick up ticket. And what a lovely morning.  Luxuriating in the glorious views of tbe frothy white and green verges and hedgerows of early May.   Very light traffic … no one on the toll bridge.

Climbed  out of the car at the park and ride … even though the bus was there I was early enough to be able to take in the area. So few cars and very light traffic meant i could hear the birds and there were plenty announcing their boundaries.  I must confess to feeling quite pleased with myself and the morning.  Rummaged  through the bag for purse to sort out parking.  NO PURSE

No cards . No money.

Back in the car.

Very light traffic  and  even lighter in my direction

Back home . NO PURSE.

remembering the petrol stop yesterday located card in jacket pocket, but no purse.  Back in  car .

Still lightish traffic … no queue at toll bridge (does everyone work at home on a friday?)  Back to car park no listening to birds now

Bus there and waitewaited  for another 5 minutes . Might just make original planned train

Ticket  code on phone  , somewhere,  got ticket just as the planned train drew out!

Missed it.


Dandelion Day cont’d

It’s not a thing but perhaps it ought to be ..maybe somewhere it is. I really like dandelions: that big sun head giving all sorts of insects a landing-place. Greeting the spring  when many other flowers are still a little shy to show up.

Caught in the tail back which snaked around the roundabout and stopped. This offered the chance to look to the clock faces, the mass of fluffy heads getting ready to blow out the time with the next gust of wind.  I came back here on the way home, hoping the day had been still and the seed heads remaining.

I came back to park up and take the photos.

Have you spotted these dandelion days? They happen twice –  the day you first notice that the those yellow heads are all out everywhere .. the first flush. Then the second when they all transform to clocks, simultaneously; sometimes whole fields certainly along the road verges. Ok I agree perhaps less exciting when in your own garden, but I have to admit to enjoying them even there.

Being held in traffic, and viewing the verges reveals there are varieties, or perhaps mutations. I have no botanical background  but I have noticed the variations in leaves. the expected ragged, toothed leaf  the source of the name lions tooth, in some places  almost entirely smoothed out.  Reasons?   dandelion roundabout resized

In a recent project, concerning gratitude, I was looking at the very involved flower language developed by Victorians, and while it would be possible to build a bouquet of flowers representing a variety of emotions and messages no combination settled the subject sufficiently for me. Consulting several guides I could not find a reference in there for dandelions either. Strange? The plant itself can be useful  tasty vitamin c laden salad leaves, symbolic time references, roots dried and ground for coffee substitute (or so I read ) and in the past a treatment for jaundice. Perhaps the thing against the inclusion for the posy makers is the flower will not stay open when picked, losing the sun it closes down.

In looking into my gratitude plans,  I am proposing the dandelion is the symbolic plant for my subject. I am not going into my discussion on gratitude here .. still much to explore, but I will briefly mention why the dandelion

The flower head .. bright sunshine yellow, the immediate reaction.  Thankfulness for the gift, the offer , the past action someone else carried out which enables you to now do something ,

The deep tap roots this plant has –  that past action  may not have been with you in mind, someone else’s selfless act, waiting for the spring, and even the effects of the gift embedding itself in you gradually changing your attitude or actions

The seed head – superb dispersal system of this plant.  The gift the idea, how best to truly acknowledge the effect but by taking that and using it yourself , spreading its effect further.

These are the basis of my reason for adopting dandelions to carry the idea of gratitude.  I have wandered from my roadside commentary, but sometimes it is while you are stuck in traffic that these other thoughts are given time to mull and sneak around your head and the seeds of ideas get planted.

Enjoy your commute







and another car park

I can hardly say this is my commute area. But it fits under the subject type.  I have been collecting car park commuting and car park treasure pictures for ages now  – and rarely have the image on the device to load.  Also I write notes about my regular – oh and irregular journeys on what note pad I might have when the fleeting scene crosses the view. The intention always to share that moment or the captured image, either the photograph or the wordy description. But coming back later the mood has gone. And the notes need to stay in whatever book they are.

This picture is not at all a regular commute, but a quiet car park on a cold, wet and misty day at the start of April. A visit to Niagara  – visit the Falls.  Impressive as the sound of the falls was immediate as soon as we got out the car.  Impressive even with restricted views and as you see here the mist levels hovering so low. Humbling the force of the natural phenomenon, quite overwhelming possibly even because of restricted view.

yes I have to admit that i like the car park image too. I know this is after the event, but as I am sorting out the holiday album and deciding what to do with the red poncho .. not inappropriate.


The commute 

The vehicle to get you regularly from one place to another, the space there you inhabit and the space you occupy as transition , for that transistion,just some of the variations I have been considering in little short snaps in these writings 

 I have just been listening to the BBC from our own correspondent program and the account of the visit to the airbase and drone pilots.  Disturbing on so many levels the commute to war. 

One brave soul 

That was me, yesterday afternoon.  I exaggerate. But I was waiting for the bus at around 3:20 in the afternoon. 

It came around the corner with the the ‘SORRY  BUS FULL ‘ heading . Of course at that time I ought to have realised that my journey time would clash with school coming out. Even though the sign was clear, the bus drew alongside the pavement and the driver signalled that there was a single place. 

I was not the only one waiting for the bus , but I had been first in  the line, so I stepped up.  It was difficult to see where or how that single spot was going to be as the school children . You mean space for one brave soul, I commented to the driver,he nodded smiling . 

Oh it was noisy. Such a difference to the early  morning commuting bus journeys.  Laughing , joking and chat. I squeezed into the passage, my back pack and me  jostling for space. The bus had not been going long before a young lad offered me his seat. Yes I was a little surprised and definately grateful. We agreed that we would swop places , but I suggested he should leave the large instrument box at my  feet – not in my way but easily be a problem in the crowded gangway. He was not keen, and I guess it took away some of his gesture if he then left his belongings in the space.

I have to admit I was pleased and surprised with the offer, but I was completely overtaken by the energy in the bus. 

Energy as a tangible physical force caught happily joyful in that homeward bound journey. It seemed to me such a powerful potential, benign at that mome, and on the  outskirts of town, when a large number got off at the same stop, they took the energy with them . It was not just that the individuals had gone but that that physical ‘energy’ as a collective possibility had left. In a way it took the breath out of the bus and my breathing space too.  Strange feeling 

The atmosphere changed, because their places were taken  the primary school children,who  with parents alighted at the stop where most the secondary students got off. 

Each journey, every journey something different, I ‘m pleased the yesterday I was the one brave soul. 

And next …

It is with great sadness that I must announce the departure from the car park.  The car now leaving. … Well actually, left a while ago 

So the routines shift and change. While setting up the [inside] OUTSIDE festival, the paid job the regular place I commute to , got in touch to say the moving date was coming forward  several months and was to be the following week . My return from ‘holiday’ then was to be to different premises . 

Different address needs a different routine And I am still working on that. It is almost that until a new routine is established that I can then stand back and really take in the details of the places.

So, what to do with the car park treasures?  Not all of them have been photographed recorded catalogued , and some I have as photos and not collated  them up together.  Perhaps this is the project to come …  Before the new routes  filter into the plans and upset all the old memories of carpark treasure hunts and finds. 

That great fascinating liminal place .. Oh the number of pictures of it and the immediate surrounds .. The strength of the wind as it blewover the  Tarmac ground , the chatter of the hedge leaves especially in the winter when brittle brown and hanging on despite the cold. That sense of shifting balance that happened to me there , moving between home and work and away again  and between the agricultural and manufacturing industries 

Can a place be a muse?   I think that place must have been mine . If I say goodbye now will the treasure get catalogued or just sit not knowing where it belongs anymore, so I can’t yet sign off , I really feel something needs to come from those things .. I will think on it some more