Saturday, April 23

Early morning on the Thames footpath

On a glorious morning on a long bank-holiday weekend, 6.30am does not seem like a silly time for a bike ride.

The tide was just on the turn, the river high and still. Myself and Mrs Fox eyed each other cautiously as we met just a few feet apart, while skirting the hoardings outside the Greenwich Foot Tunnel - she trotted down to the river to slake her thirst while I rode on.

Valerian flowers are just coming out along the edges of the river where development has yet to reach. I try to savour these trips and hoard up the sights, sounds and smells to keep me going through the long working days.

Further round the peninsula a couple of yachts skimmed silently by, sneaking out of the city to grab the best of the sunshine. Canary Wharf's blocks shimmered slightly in the haze.

Thankfully the peninsula still has its gritty industrial edge; I loved the texture and colour of the hull of this ship from which gravel was being unloaded as I passed by.

Further round, near to the yacht club, I spotted a pair of Oyster Catchers probing the mud with their long pink bills - not a bird I've spotted so far upstream before.

And down by the Thames Barrier I passed a group of very drunk and noisy young Polish men, who looked like they'd been hanging out there drinking the whole night, going by the boxes of cheap booze that surrounded them.

All fascinating, food for the soul.


Mary deB said...

Your pictures are lovely! The river looks so calm, not at all like how I remember it, all bustling! Wonderful!

colleen said...

How well you have caught the beauty of the river in early mornin. Not that I normally manage to get there so soon, but when I do it feels like a discovered secret.