Blossom at Etruria

Yesterday’s walk was past trees coming into blossom on the Cauldon arm of the canal. The white bridge over it is in the background. I decided to make a collage if it, post it notes cut up for the blossom and leaves. I used some black monoprint for the tree bark. Then I added black ink and graphite. This was for the #bandofsketchers prompt regeneration. I’m afraid the blossom looks more like butterflies.. But I tried!

Boat in a lock

Narrow boat in the bottom of the canal lock as the water started to fill it up. Seen on a walk today.

I couldn’t stop to see the lock fill up fully as my friend had walked further on and I don’t like walking along the canal on my own.

It was quite warm today for a change and the breeze had dropped a bit. We carried on along and I half expected the narrow boat to catch up with us but we got to the next lock and it was still well behind us.

Great to feel sunshine on my face properly for the first time this year. I even took my coat off!

In the canal 😭

I was depressed by the amount of rubbish floating in the canal today. It was in an area close to Stoke Town centre.

I saw many old plastic bottles, they were dirty, as if they had been stored somewhere outside and then dumped together into the canal later. There were bits of broken wood and even an old set of mudguards from a bike floating on the surface. It makes me angry, because this section of canal is part of our city. How disgusting that stuff can just be dumped. Then further on towards Dolphin Boats but on the other side was a burnt out motor scooter. No one seems to care. I tagged in the Canal and Rivers Trust. I hope they can arrange a clean up.

Day Fifty

It’s been fifty days since I started the #100daywalkingchallenge. I’m surprised I’ve done it without a break. I started doing about two miles a day but I’m slowly building up. Today I did 4.6 miles. Yes on the flat, and not very fast, but I keep going.

I’m in a group that are trying to achieve this, not to raise money, but just to try and improve our health. There is no pressure, no minimum amount. Just gentle support of one another. If I don’t feel like going far I get encouraged by a friend, and vice versa.

Cracked path

Uneven surface as tree toots push through. Top path around Westport lake, between the lake and the canal. On the left, canal barges were lined up, sometimes occupied, others shuttered. A couple sat on deck chairs, chatting. Wearing warm coats. I think they had cups of coffee to warm themselves.

We carried on round the lakes again, sometimes surrounded by clouds of black flies, sharp ovipositors sticking out their rear ends like massive bee stings. I think they were attracted by the goose droppings on the paths. They were blown on the wind where the breeze pushed across the lake, but came back and surrounded us under the trees in the lee of the wind.

I’m glad I was wearing my glasses and a hat, and I was pleased to be wearing a mask, even though it was not really needed outside.

This week I’ve walked about twenty two miles, slightly less than the week before. But my toes and feet hurt. I’m getting quicker though….

Bottle oven combination

Same bottle oven, six different views, three of the oven, three reflected in the surface of the Trent and Mersey canal. Today I walked four and a half miles. We were doing mostly flat walking although there are a few uphill stretches where the locks allow water to be lowered in stages down hill, the barges float into the locks which are either emptied and the water and barge move downhill, or filled, so the barge moves up hill. We noticed a lot of debris from trees and litter was floating in the canal, the weather was so windy yesterday its blown in…

Dolphin boats

Reflected in the canal, the water is a gorgeous blue. Dolphin boats with its little dolphin symbol on it has been there for years. Its looking a bit tired now. Life is not being kind to it, and with lockdown I don’t even know if it’s open. As well as boat hire they have an air gun shooting range and archery, but we’ve never been in there, just walked past on the other side of the canal….