I took a risk in clambering aboard the Zimmer Bus this morning, what with it being half term I expected the bus to be full of kids but as it turned out only one was seen. She sat at the front with mum and placed 14 stuffed animals on the window in front of her and played with them all journey long. Thankfully the rest either were away on holiday or found something nearer home to keep them out of trouble. Most I suspect are rich enough to have a car and drive the brats out of town to a beach or parkland somewhere.
A quiet journey other than the kid in the front seat and we passed the fields full of green crops awaiting the time to turn golden. Quite a contrast, the green fields with gently swaying crops on either side of a narrow road full of traffic, much of it heavy traffic at that. The major roundabout where every main road meets causes several mile tailbacks but just wait until the same fields are given over to the new 'little town' they wish to plant there. Another entrance to add to the roundabout perhaps, or merely yet longer tailbacks as planners are ignoring the road system being over full even now?
I am not sure what the three trophies on that sign are supposed to represent. I am not clear as to whether it is new made to look old or an old sign slowly dying. I never even looked into what the shop sold. It did stand out from the Town Hall tower behind and I thought it worth a shot. I looked into the proper bookshop just before this and forced my hands behnd my back and myself out quickly enough, I am reading three books and have ten more lined up so spending cash on more was not a good idea. I could not however walk past the bookshop, it kind of dragged me in!
This snatched pic from the bus sums up Camulodunum for me. On the one hand there is the church tower going back centuries, old buildings, great history, residing alongside derelict shop fronts like this one. What ought to be a well run tourist town, they refuse to be called 'city' as they claim they are the 'oldest town in England,' is ruined for me by being crowded, dingy and choked by traffic. Add to this the number of what are called 'homeless' and the place takes on a grubby run down appearance.
The town appears to draw the 'homeless' like no other and I do not understand why. On a sunny day it is not unusual to see a man, wrapped in blackets or old sleeping bag, sitting in a dark, damp underpass begging for handouts. Some feel sympathy but I sense a chancer! No-one begs just anywhere, certain places are money spinenrs and this is one of them, though not much spinning when I passed. Too many offer coins to such beggers to ese their conscience, some from care and others thinking they may help such people. All too often they are conned. If you really wish to help homeless people then give at least £5 a month to a suitable organisation that works amongst them. That way those that can be helped out of this lifestyle, and who knows what got them into it, these will be given help. Those that do not want out can be left to it and many chancers who take home good money to add to JSA benefits or just live of the takings can be avoided. Some of course, and I have a little experience of them, some need really professional help and a few coins may not do them any good. If the conscience hurts offer a 'Mars Bar' or some such rather than money. Not much can be done about the traffic however, unless banning it all bar buses and taxis can be tried.
This young Starling was having trouble landing on the feeders, he ought to be able by now he comes everyday, and instead filled himslef up with the crumbs lying on the window ledge. Do you notice I have as yet not got around to the window cleaning part of the 'Spring Clean!' That may remain the case for a while...
I did however manage to visit every remaining charity shop in Camulodunum and find nothing that I wished for. The nearest was a jacket that was too small wth a price that was too high! Anything over a fiver is too high in my opinion. Only one woman in the shops acknowledged my existence, there were plenty of women around filling the space being acknowleded however, and I note the mens secions in these shops appears to be shrinking. Maybe the men are not throwing out the stuff they used to, Conservative austerity reaches even here.
The bus home was empty, although a teenager managed to fill some time loudly talking on her phone to a friend about nothing for a while. I preferred the child and mother on the way in. We even arrived ahead of schedule in spite of the drivers attempts to slow down. More chance to take in the green fields swaying as we passed, more chance to observe blue sky with the sun piercing the clouds, more chance for teeny to talk to her friend about nothing!