14 Apr 2015

14th April 2015 Staring into the abyss!

Tuesday 14th 41F, 5C, heavy overcast, breezy with a little rain. Showers possible this morning. Less windy than yesterday.

It doesn't look much in the photograph but this poplar is over 5' in diameter at the base! Such roadside trees can reach enormous sizes and seem to be stable even in Danish storms. 

I was reading an online article the other day where the author suggested that one should avoid chasing viewers, followers and "likers." It is tempting to try and please as many visitors as possible. Yet online visitors to a narrow interest blog, such as mine, could find themselves here for an almost infinite number of reasons.

The likely number of cycling enthusiasts who also find upright trikes interesting must be few indeed. I'm really not sure what other search terms will find my blog. Some search engine connections seem highly unlikely. While others are hardly likely to pick up on my "forestry" pictures as a theme. I do not label my pictures with other than their P number and rsz. Besides, Google image search is still crap at finding anything using more than one search term.

When I broached the subject with my brother, on remaining in context, he suggested that I just write about what interests me. Which might be seen as a scatter gun approach but at least allows me off the noose of continuously entertaining my small band of loyal, repeat visitors. Not that I intend to stray too far. Tricycling is still my daily pleasure/torment/obsession.

No doubt I could reach a mass audience with topless kittens without ever mentioning tri-cycling. Or anything else for that matter! Even as a committed "clown on a tricycle" I have too much self respect for that ploy. So I must pedal my lonely furrow, through the road-plastered mud and hope others find their way here even if they stay only briefly. Hopefully they will find something amusing or interesting in my lifelong butterfly approach. I have had hundreds of interests and hobbies over the years so my wife re-applies the butterfly badge at fairly frequent intervals.

I seem to have satiated myself with images of pretty thatched houses and cottages. At least within a modest [say] 30 mile radius of my locality. Too many attractive or traditional Danish homes are utterly spoilt by dustbins, post boxes and parked cars. Fixed post boxes, on the property boundary, were made a legal requirement to speed up the efficiency of a Danish Post Office deliveries desperate to reduce staff numbers as "snail mail" letters dwindled under the onslaught of email and online information. The hideous blight on the landscape of [traditionally] white post boxes has almost ruined building photography for me. Now add in the ubiquitous black and green wheely bins! Which so many Danes consider suitable roadside furniture for their highly "dez rez" homes. Some even erect decorative fences around their bins so that they [the bins] are expensively framed but still only visible and accessible from the road! Do they walk around the framing to put stuff in their bins? Life is too short!

Presumably this highly visible roadside bin business is out of fear of missing a collection. Or came about due to some subliminal association with post boxes and the advertising garbage usually found in them each day. Advertising special offers is big business in Denmark. Every supermarket chain and big shed store produces a weekly "comic" full of special offers. These newspapers are delivered by armies of private delivery bods [including countless children] or the post-person. While one can register a lack of interest in the advertising guff, to avoid the snowball effect, it doesn't always work perfectly. Hence the close association between waste bin and postbox is constantly reinforced. Resulting in the present roadside eyesores.

You may think that the quantity of advertising garbage does not warrant such formal arrangements. Yet I remember passing numerous subdivided, city houses with flats on each floor. Where the entrance halls are quite literally piled high with this advertising junk! Passers-by get brief glimpses of a persistent hoarders worst nightmare. As the unfortunate occupants come and go through a dark, narrow chasm between towering stacks of paper. Presumably the flats are occupied in swift rotation so that no one person can organise a proper clear-out. Hence the rapid descent into advertising newspaper mayhem!

The sheer quantity and weight of this material must be a huge psychological burden on those who must tolerate such potential fire hazards on their ground floor. I can't imagine what it does for their love life. It is no wonder there are so many divorces and single people about. Getting a JCB or skid-loader into the entrance halls is obviously a non-starter. Particularly where so many town houses have narrow flights of steps. So how do you clear all this stuff out?  Hold a street party, hire a builder's skip and form a human chain?

What if you don't know anybody even in the next flat let alone the entire street? Alert the city council of the potential for a catastrophic landslide on the next opening of the front door? Possibly of such volume and extent that it actually blocks a bus route?

Getting back to the wheely bins: The narrow slot where the green bin has been divided between paper and glass hardly has room for one month's advertising material. I calculate that if the occupants of two flats went on a fortnight's holiday the waste problem could easily get away from them. It's like one of those space travel situations. Where you can't carry enough fuel to get far without requiring an exponential increase in fuel capacity. The numbers just don't add up!

Regular visitors will recognise my waffling in response to a morning of rain. The habit of some years now is to ride way weather permitting. Today's inclemency has been made worse by a lack of emails. For the second time in a month I am unable to satisfy the demands of my email "provider" in providing a valid password! Some people say that having an internet connection is a basic human right. They should add emails to that demand IMO!

It's not all doom and gloom. The BBC has a story about trikes: Under their Autos section! Despite recent international dominance by racing cyclists from Gravely Blighted the BBC News website does not have a cycling heading under which to post its [non-contextual and often sexist] advertising! Never mind, Top Gear's "barrel bomb" will be back soon on another obese contract at license payer's expense. I'm amazed he didn't get a golden handshake for failure to provide a serving wench after a hard day's filming. All we got was the roasted boor!


A heavy grey sky dripped until after 3pm but I went out anyway. Only to be overtaken by an old Golf on the brow of a long hill. Straight into the maw of a Volvo! It was so close I don't know how they missed each other. The Golf did a violent swerve straightened up and pressed on. As soon as they take the human out of autopilot the better! Later I was overtaken in a village by a Volvo doing jerky turns over the full width of the lane. Just another drunk? Or zonked out on antidepressants? Who knows? The line between sheer luck and a gory tragedy is too thin to measure.

My back was damp from wearing the new jacket at 50F on a long uphill drag. I shouldn't have bothered with the extra cycling jacket underneath as well the long underwear. I'll treat it as a jacket in its own right from now on. A young chap on a racing bike was training hard in the lanes but ignored my wave. I blame those welding goggle sunglasses and the all-black clothing. I'd have handed him a white stick but he was going the other way. Only 10 miles.

Click on any image for an enlargement.

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