Today I mounted possibly the strangest expedition I've ever done, in both my own eyes, and those of my readers.
I ran to a traffic island near where I work, about a 5km journey, to photograph the flowers there.
It's an odd thing to do I know, but every day when I cycle home from work I've noticed this traffic island, a large one near the end of the Newark Bypass, is just a mass of yellow and white flowers. I've been longing to take a closer look, but on my bicycle and without a camera it is both tricky, and rather pointless.
Well today I went. I did my urban Robinson Crusoe routine and stranded myself on this oasis of beauty within fast moving streams of heavy traffic. The wind was blowing a brisk westerly, which meant that I wasn't able to smell KFC, Mcdonalds or the sewage farm; just the odour of tarmac, rubber, and belching engines. I had only brought a bottle of Asda sport drink for provisions.
Luckily, I wasn't going to stay long.
THe predominant colour on the island is yellow, courtesy of the golden variant of ox-eye daisy that grows taller than anything else here, including its white cousin. As always their flower heads, formed actually of a colony of tiny individual flowers, act as a home to a multitude of tiny insects, the sort of insect your shirt gets covered in when you go cycling in summer.
Also present were corncockles, which for a plant that was down to a solitary specimen in the entire UK in 2014, seems incredibly numerous round here, poppies, and blue flowers that could either have been cornflowers or chicory. Plenty of red tailed bumblebees and hoverflies were feeding here, and I caught a glimpse of a great or small skipper.
It is such a bizarre place, an ecosystem that very few people must ever visit. I can only assume that at some point, perhaps like the wildflower meadow at Gedling cricket ground, someone has been carrying out a bit of guerilla gardening seeding the place with wildflower seed balls, until a permanent population took hold.
However it came about, it is great place to sail myself too on my running shoe boat.