Oh lovely autumn sunshine, providing a respite from the colder days and oh those delightful autumn colours! I have been out and about a lot this week and have been enjoying cycle rides in the crisp morning air. We are so lucky in Beeston, to be surrounded by green spaces, one I have more recently discovered, just five minutes walk from my house.
If you stroll up Sandy Lane, just off the A52, you will be glad you made the hill climb to the top. I have been cycling up this hill since we moved, to visit one of my students in nearby Wollaton, once I had realised that it was a very reliable short-cut which avoided a fair bit of the main road.
At the very top of the ascent, you are rewarded with a picturesque route through a small patch of woodland and the clean scent of greenness which is a welcome contrast to the heady traffic fumes on the busy road. For quite a while now, I have been aware that there is more to the downward curving path which leads me down to Bramcote shops. so today I decided to investigate the alternative route that appears to go in another direction to find out what else lies behind the shady entrance. I love cycling around my hometown but you often spot much more on a walk, so I ditched the bike in favour of my feet today.
A cool dampness filled my nose as I took a deep breath, much needed after the speedy hill climb. A patch of wild flowers swayed lightly on my right in the slightly chilly breeze that swirled the earthy smell of moss and bark up towards me. I felt instantly refreshed! As I turned a corner at the end of a path, the trees started to crowd together and I felt them guiding my down into denser woodland. It was hard to believe that I was so close to two of the busiest roads in the area as the traffic noise was already a distant memory. I took the time to look around, to savour my new surroundings.
When I spied the red domes on the ground, I knew instantly that they were some of the brightest toadstools I have ever seen and thought of my lovely friend Julia, who takes the most amazing photographs on her woodland walks and how much she might have liked to have discovered them. I liked how startling they were against the grey earth and admired their perfect roundness for a while before continuing to explore. I also thought about the nature walks I used to go on with my sister and my dad when we were small, and how we both had trouble keeping up with his huge strides!
Pushing on, I started to hear the familiar drone of engines and realised that I must be approaching the road again. I marvelled at the fact that I had totally lost track of time and then was pleased to note that it didn’t really matter, I had nowhere to be anytime soon. I recognised the low hanging tree branch that marked the final meander down to the main road and noticed the lush green moss that half-coated the darkening bark. I knew I would soon be reaching my favourite spot on this route, a sight that couldn’t last much longer but had extended beyond the late summer months and was a feast for the eyes.
Beautiful blooms that I have lingered past on many a day. I just can’t pass by without gazing through this delicate cloud of flimsy petals and ferny leaves.
And the best thing is, you get to enjoy them again on the way back! You have got to make the most of a short-cut as pretty as this one. Luckily I need to use it at least once a week.
On my way back home, I noticed just how many leaves have fallen since last weekend. Littering the pavements like nature’s confetti, I counted at least eight different varieties of leaf and several shades of yellow, orange, brown and purple. This leaf is from one of the trees we have in our front garden and has to be in one of my favourite autumn shades. I am sure another one of my nature loving friends Dr Norcup could tell me what kind of tree it is from, as I have been enjoying her series of articles in The Beestonian, Trees of Beeston, so I know she know’s her ash from her elder.
I think that might be where I got the inspiration for this week’s craft activity for Bee Creative, and have been sketching some instructions this evening so that we the group can have a go at making them independently. After all, they know their mountain folds from their valley folds now.
Until next week then,
make some time to enjoy nature’s treasures
and enjoy a little escape.
Keep it sweet