It really felt like a proper early spring day today. Every day the sun gets higher in the sky, and thus even if the ambient temperature isn't actually all that high - 7C or so today - it still feels pretty warming.
I did 20 miles, two bike rides in one. Phase one was the Cotham route, Phase two the Coddington one. I was hoping to come across bumble bees or butterflies, but in the end I saw neither. There were no flocks of redwing in the roadside trees, no fieldfare in the fallow looking farm fields.
No, what I did see was a couple of barrow boy scrappy kids on Hawton Lane, taking the metal pump out of what looked like a fridge freezer. I may be being cynical, but I don't suppose they had the license to deal with a fridge stuffed full of coolant. Nor did I think that after removing any bits of value, that it wasn't going to be left just where they were messing with it.
I see an awful lot of fly tips while out on the roads in these areas, or running along Clay Lane. Two main types - builders waste, including asbestos - and the aforementioned white goods. It just makes me really angry. You see on Facebook all the time that folk are leaving out stuff for scrappers to pick up, not wanting to pay the council for removal, and frankly not caring what happens to it providing the carcass of a washing machine isn't left on their front garden.
Im probably being very very naieve, but if private contractors and collectors can make money out of scrap, why can't the local council? They could collect it for free, and make a little revenue on the scrap to plough back into local services. They are having to waste money on clearing up the rubbish anyway, people aren't going to stop fly tipping out of the goodness of their hearts.
And perhaps the drivers wouldn't be as dangerous as some of the current specimens, and the vehicles not so shoddy.
As for builders rubble, well, perhaps it might be quite easy to set up a camera trap at the well known dumping spots, and crack down hard on the miscreants. It sounds petty, but it really disgusts me when I'm out and about. Last summer, it seemed there was a fly tip every half mile between Cotham and Thorpe.
Well, I shall descend from my high horse now, and look forward to really starting to see some butterflies when I'm next off work! And head to RSPB Langford at the weekend, possibly, without getting blown away.