A second ‘accepting extra walking’ post, this time looking at two very different areas.
As promised yesterday, I am doing a non-cricket post today, resuming my ‘accepting extra walking series‘. For this post, and any others along these line that I produce I will start with a London based example and then move on to something from another period of my life.
LONDON: VISITING THE SOUTH BANK CENTRE
There are many attractions in the South Bank Centre. In my case, with my love of classical music, I was usually going there for a concert either in the Queen Elizabeth Hall or the Purcell Room. From the then family home in southwest London I could take the Northern line to Waterloo or go to Streatham and take a train to Blackfriars (District and Circle as well as various mainline railways) and walk along the Thames from there, a slightly longer but more scenic route than the one from Waterloo. This walking route also takes in Southwark Station (Jubilee). Also, approaching from north of the river one could use Charing Cross (Northern, Bakerloo, mainline railways), from which one could exit direct on to a footbridge across the Thames, and if one was on the Piccadilly line this walk could be extended be getting off at Covent Garden, a short walk away from Charing Cross. Here are some pictures:
BARNSLEY TO WOMBWELL
This one comes from my university days. Barnsley had a leisure centre called the Metrodome, but if you actually wanted to swim rather than just splash around Wombwell Baths was a superior option. The basic journey from Barnsley to Wombwell is one stop by rail with a walk at both ends, but I did sometimes walk all the way there and get the train back. From where I was living at the time, on a side road off Doncaster Road the straight walking route was down to Stairfoot, turn right, and keep walking until you reach Wombwell, which does take quite a while. One little bit of cricket content: one of the roads one passes when walking this way is Roy Kilner Road, named in honour of the Yorkshire and England all rounder of the 1920s who died near the end of that decade from an illness contracted while coaching in India. He only played a few test matches, but his first class record (LHB, SLA) saw him amass over 14,000 runs at an average of 30.58 and take 1,003 wickets at 18.45 a piece. He was born in Wombwell, hence having a road there named in his honour, and died in Kendray, also near Barnsley.
Something very different from my usual fare, but every bit as much me as anything that has appeared on this blog. The focus is on occasions when I accepted a longer walk than necessary.
If this post is well received it could be the start of a new series, hence the 1 in the title. As a lifelong non-driver I am looking at examples of situations where for various reasons one might accept extra walking rather than use public transport. I am starting with a particularly dramatic example from my younger days.
The boundaries between Streatham and Tooting are somewhat blurred. On postcodes, SW16 is Streatham and SW17 is Tooting (the rest of the late SW postcodes are SW18 – Wandsworth, SW19 – Wimbledon and SW20 – West Wimbledon), but on constituencies some of SW16 is in Tooting, including the postcode I called home for 20 years of my life, SW16 6TE. That house was situated pretty much equidistant from four stations, Tooting Bec on the Northern Line, Tooting, Streatham and Streatham Common all on suburban railways, all of which were 15-20 minutes walk away. Before the time I am talking about in this post I had also used Balham, further distant but still walkable, as a starting point for some journeys, and had occasionally chosen to walk home from Wimbledon, a considerably longer walk. The two pictures below, both created by using google maps show the wider area around my old home and then a closer focus on its immediate surroundings:
GETTING FROM TOOTING TO BRIXTON WITHOUT DRIVING
It was in 1997 that I did a few temporary jobs for Lambeth Council via an agency, which involved travelling to and from Lambeth Town Hall, in Brixton. At that time I was not a big fan of buses, so I have to admit they did enter my thoughts. Because of the way the railways both underground and overground work I had basically two options using them: Northern line to Stockwell and then one stop south on the Victoria line, or Streatham to Herne Hill and then Herne Hill to Brixton, three stops in total (2,1), but a change and potentially significant waits for trains at both stages. I actually decided that the time saving was not worth the cost of travel, and opted instead to walk the whole way. There were many possible walking routes, and I experimented with a few different ones. I came to the conclusion that the best route for my purposes was to spend the early part of the walk there/ later part of the walk back away from main roads, so I used Telford Avenue as my link road from the end of Tooting Bec Common to the A23. Immediately after Telford Avenue in the Brixton direction the A23 meets Streatham Place, which is also known as the A205 aka the South Circular, which swings north towards Clapham before turning south again towards Richmond before a final northern turn to where it meets the North Circular (A406) – at the eastern end they do not quite meet.
NEW MALDEN – TOOTING
Between November of 1997 and September of 1999, when I returned to full time education, I worked as a data entry clerk for a furniture company, based in an office above their warehouse in New Malden. That is significantly further from Tooting than Brixton, and I had a pretty much unvaried route in in the mornings: I would get a train north from Balham to Clapham Junction and then travel out from there to New Malden. In the evenings, especially if the weather was decent there was scope for much more variation, as if I started back along the main road, rather than go into New Malden, I get to Raynes Park, Wimbledon Chase, Wimbledon and South Wimbledon with varying lengths of walk, each of which offered ways to travel onwards, and on more than one occasion I actually walked all the way.
Here a few A-Z map pages to help you orient yourself, and to end this section:
LINKS AND PHOTOGRAPHS
This post, even more than most of mine, is very much an autistic person’s post, so I start the links section by directing you towards an excellent thread by Ann Memmott in which she superbly takes apart some derogatory stuff about autistic people. A screenshot of the start of the thread is below, and I urge to to read the whole of it by clicking here.
Finally, the London Transport Museum have recently produced bitesize histories of the Metropolitan and District lines, which you can read by clicking the respective line names. If you enjoy their efforts, pieces about those lines that I created can be viewed here, here and here (three links, because the original Metropolitan Railway route is actually now served by the Hammersmith and City line).
The first of several posts in my Cornish Winter Break series relating to Falmouth.
I continue my series about my Cornish Winter Break. Today’s is the first of what will be quite a few posts dealing with the last trip that I made as part of that holiday. This trip was unique in two ways among those I made during this holiday:
It was my idea
It featured a train journey
My mother and I got on the train at St Germans at 10:36, changed at Truro for the shuttle service to Falmouth Docks, and arrived at Falmouth just after 12:00. Falmouth was a planned port, first built in the late 16th century to provide an extra starting point for the export of china (it was intended to augment the existing port of Fowey, not challenge it – the person who planned it was actually a native of Fowey). It is a magnificent setting (my camera battery ran out before the end of the trip, but not before I had taken some fine pictures). After a pause to orient ourselves we headed for the National Maritime Museum Cornwall, which will get several posts of its own. The museum occupied as for quite some time, and then we had a brief look at the rest of the town, but I was getting tired by then, and we headed back not very long after finishing at the museum. I intend to revisit both the town and the museum.
Continuing my account of my Cornish holiday with a mention of the Jamaica Inn.
Welcome to the latest installment in my series about my Cornish winter break. Just before I get to the main meat of the post there is…
MY NORFOLK HOSPICE STORY
I have been working with the Norfolk Hospice on an account of my story that they can use for publicity purposes. It is now online and can be read by clicking here.
This features in the novels of Daphne Du Maurier and Rosamunde Pilcher (the latter is apparently a bigger draw these days). The Inn, a former coaching inn and smuggling hotspot, serves a good range of drinks at prices that are not sufficiently much over the odds to cause real annoyance. I opted as usual for their locally brewed real ale (they also had a few less local options, notably a couple of beers that clearly came from Dartmoor). The decorations are quite impressive, and there is an ever changing display of foreign banknotes pinned up by customers – my nephew added some Indonesian money while we were there. It was a fine adjunct to the Tintagel trip.
The first of several posts about the Eden Project in my series about my Cornish winter holiday.
After a brief aside it is time to resume my coverage of my Cornish winter holiday with the first of what will be several posts about the Eden Project.
This was a family trip, and we travelled from my parents place by car. There is generous car parking provision, but you can also travel there by public transport (train to St Austell and then a connecting bus to the Eden Project). We just missed a bus from the car park to the visitors centre and walked there instead. This was my second visit, but the place had developed so massively from my first visit that it was effectively a new experience. After the purchase of tickets we decided what to do. We settled on the Walk Through Time, the new building and the Mediterranean Biome (the biomes, as you will see are remarkable structures whose architecture owes much to the legendary Richard Buckminster Fuller). Here are some early pictures before I take you on the walk through time:
THE WALK THROUGH TIME
This is a wonderful lead in to the biomes and the new building, and there is only one real way to tell it, especially for me:
A continuation of my “100 cricketers” series, rounding out the second XI and introducing the third XI.
Welcome to the latest post in my “100 cricketers” series. We have covered the battersand all-rounders from our second XI, as well as the whole of the first XI, so this post deals with the bowlers from the second XI and introduces the third XI in batting order. In keeping with usual philosophy I have equipped this XI with a well-balanced bowling attack. Later in this series we shall see an example where I depart from this, because having started following cricket when I did I believed it necessary to feature a quartet of West Indies fast bowlers somewhere along the way.
A left-arm fast bowler who took over 1,000 wickets in all forms of international cricket, and also a very handy batter to be coming in number 8. He was spotted bowling in the nets by Imran Khan, and called into the Pakistan team while still in his mid-teens. He made an immediate impact, and never looked back. Wasim was one of the pioneers of reverse swing bowling.
Another left-arm fast bowler, even quicker than Wasim. Like Wasim he played county championship cricket as an overseas player, in his case for Surrey and then for Glamorgan. Overseas players in the championship is a thorny issue, my opinion being that an overseas player should only be signed if they are definitiely bringing something that no-one already in your squad can provide, and if they are good enough to attract the attention of their own national selectors. The temptation to sign any old overseas player just because you are allowed to do so should be resisted. Waqar’s great trademark was a thunderbolt yorker, although against Sri Lanka in the semi-final of the 1996 World Cup he memorably came a cropper when he deployed it too predictably and his last two overs went for 40 runs. With this pairing to open the bowling and Botham as back-up the pace bowling side of things is now well covered…
In 1993 he settled the fate a series with his first delivery therein, the legendary “Gatting Ball”, which pitched well outside leg-stump and turned so much that it dislodged the off bail. From that moment on England were spooked and the series was only ever going one way. 12 years later when England ended a long Ashes drought by winning the 2005 series Warne still captured 40 wickets in the series, in the process becoming the first bowler to take 100 test wickets in a country other than his own. When Australia took their revenge on a complacent and under-prepared England 18 months later Warne had another fine series, including the spell that virtually settled things by turning the Adelaide match upside down.
Over 700 wickets (I will not give an exact tally here, because there is an inconsistency in his official record, where wickets against a World XI are counted as test wickets, while those who played against Rest of the World sides which were recruited to replace South African touring teams in the 1970s did not have their achievements counted in the test match records) in test cricket, a tally beaten by only one bowler, and not under any immediate threat from anyone else is testament to his amazing skills, which revived a largely forgotten art (through the 1970s and 1980s spinners had increasingly, if used at all, come to be seen as keeping things tight while the quicks rested) and changed the face of cricket.
There is one caveat about Warne however – if the match or matches were scheduled to be played in India I would not pick him because he paid very dearly for his wickets in that country. Nevertheless, his huge achievements everywhere else undoubtedly qualify him to be regarded as one of the finest of all-time.
The leading wicket taker in test match history with 800 scalps to his credit. At the Oval in 1998 his captain Arjuna Ranatungachose to field first on a plumb pitch because he wanted to be sure that his main man got a proper rest between bowling stints. England made 445, but Murali claimed seven wickets with his off-spin. Sri Lanka then made almost 600, Sanath Jayasuriya leading the way with 213, and England collapsed second time round for 166, Murali adding nine wickets to his first innings seven, and Sri Lanka knocked off their tiny target without difficulty.
There have been many questions over his action down the years, but as far I as concerned he is one of the all-time greats, and well worth a place in this list.
INTRODUCING THE THIRD XI
Here in batting order is my third XI, perparing the way for a continuation of this series:
I have just had a visit from Louise, a therapist at Tapping House to fit a new toilet seat and frame to make it easier for me to use the toilet, and to discuss possibilities re therapy at Tapping House. This post attempts to give an overview of the situation.
MY CURRENT STATE OF HEALTH
My body appears to have responded well overall to the cancer treatments I have endured over the last few months – as I have mentioned elsewhere the tumour counts appear to be regularly falling. I am currently experiencing breathing issues which could be caused by any of several possibly linked issues:
One of the areas worst affected by the tumours were my lungs, and although the tumours there appear to have almost gone the current issues could still relate back to the cancer.
One of the drugs used in my chemotherapy is known to sometimes have an adverse effect on chests and lungs, and it is possible that this is a contributory factor.
I have recently had a lung infection, and currently have a mild chest infection for which I am on antibiotics, and there is no doubt that both of these have contributed to the problems.
Finally I have through necessity been been very inactive for some time, and this may also partially explain why such activity as I am currently capable of tends to leave me breathless.
The therapist has given me some tips on breathing and on posture when on my feet (e.g in the kitchen), and will be in contact with me again in about a week to see if I am improving, with a view if I am to starting me on physio sessions at Tapping House. She has also indicated that she could take me out in the wheelchair for sessions in which I sit for some of the time and walk for some of the time (the weather is exceptionally mild for an English February, and getting outside more would be good for me).
My confidence is starting to improve as time goes by and I do more things without falling or having other accidents.
At some stage, when I am strong enough to go through such a procedure, there remains an operation to be endured, and that will probably entail some recovery time as well.
For the time being I will be seeing at least one carer once per day, which remains a necessity as it ensures that someone who can presumably recognise warning signs will be seeing me daily, and one hopes will be ready to take action if needed.
With a fair wind I could be starting therapy sessions in just over a week, and I hope to spending more time out of the bungalow and to be more physically active in the not too distant future.
A brief account of another staging post on my road to recovery.
This afternoon saw another staging post in my receovery from cancer…
MY FIRST INDEPENDENT OUTDOOR WALK SINCE BECOMING ILL
Just before 2PM this afternoon I left my bungalow for a short walk. Although fairly cold and very grey the weather here is by no means terrible given that we are at the back end of December, so having donned by black beanie to cover the most obvious signs of the treatment that I have been undergoing I was ready to sally forth. I was out and about for approximately 15 minutes and save for occasional photography stops was walking all that time on my unaided own. Here are some pictures…
Presenting an idea for the next aspi.blog wall calendar and inviting suggestions in response.
Those of you familiar with this blog will know that a photographic wall calendar has become something of a tradition – the 2019 effort when I finally do it will be number four. I have started thinking about and this post is intended to show one possibility.
A CORNISH THEMED CALENDAR
Those of you who saw my “A Grockle’s Eye View of Cornwall” series (you can access them all from here) will be aware of the amazing scenery I saw while I was down there. Since it was obvious that a number of those pictures would have to feature I then started thinking about how a Cornish gallery calendar might work, and this is where I have reached so far.
THE FRONT COVER
To provide a clue of what is within this is my envisaged front cover pic if I go the “pure Cornish” route:
OTHER POSSIBLE PICTURES
January would be this one:
The other pictures that I have identified as possibles, in no particular order are these:
WHAT DO YOU SAY?
Do you think the “pure Cornish Calendar” idea works? If so do you have any other of my Cornish pictures that you would like to see featured? If not feel free to suggest others of my pictures that should be there.