Thursday, 19 May 2016

Radford Semele (yet another old line)

Black clouds but the sun was out when we got home from the pub last night

On Tuesday Buddy and I cycled back to where we were moored last week at Bascote.  It was a pleasant day so an ideal opportunity to see if any Small Blues were around in the railway cutting.  As it was we didn’t find any but we now know that some have been recorded at other sites in Warwickshire so we’ll keep looking.

Ironically and surprisingly I saw my first Green Hairstreak of the year.  It was ironic as it was in the hedge right next to where we were moored a week ago.  Surprising because towpaths are not their normal habitat; this one was flying along as if it was on a mission. They normally like flitting around a favourite bush not straying far.  Needless to say I didn’t get a photograph.

It was good to cycle a good few miles and not get a puncture!

Our mooring ,this week, at Radford, is right next to the entrance to the Offchurch Greenway.   This is part of the abandoned Leamington Spa to Rugby railway line and does look rather promising.

The path on the right leads back down to the canal

It’s a really nice walk even if we don’t see any particularly interesting butterflies.  About a mile along, the line goes under a bridge which still has smoke deflectors fitted.

Overbridge still with smoke deflectors fitted and a dog sheltering from the rain

The deflectors were put under bridges to stop the acidic smoke eating into the stone work.  There is also a school of thought that they were installed to stop smoke getting into the eyes of walkers or horses passing over the bridge.  I don’t really think we thought like that in the mid 1800s if you consider the conditions people worked in.

On Tuesday we were reminded we live on ‘canal time’ as we heard our new boat is now delayed until the end of August.  As frustrating as it is, it’s not really that far away and the delay will soon be forgotten.  We have yet to meet any boaters whose new boat was delivered to the original schedule.

It seemed to pour all day on Wednesday so Buddy and I got extremely wet on our morning walk.  By the time my clothes had dried out later in the afternoon, the sun appeared so we ventured out for another walk.  Needless to say, after a mile or so the black clouds reappeared and we got soaked again.

On Monday evenings we go to bridge lessons at Stratford-upon-Avon bridge club.  Next week is the end of term and the new term doesn’t start until October.  We want to keep practising over the break so have agreed to meet up with two of the ladies who live in Stratford every Monday evening for some friendly games.  What I mean is, they live in Stratford all the time, we will meet up every Monday evening.  So as it was still raining I spent the rest of Wednesday afternoon preparing hands so we can hit the ground running as they say.

In the evening we walked to meet Karen from work and popped down to the Stag at Offchurch for a mid-week pint.

The Stag at Offchurch - quite a pretty village with a busy pub
When we got home the sun was out but the black clouds were rolling in again – it made for the pleasant picture at the top.

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