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Thursday, 10 April 2014
Gargoyles

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It’s unusual for me to get such a close up view of these creatures, but these ones were low in the wall.

Posted by bigblue on 10/04/2014 at 08:50 PM
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York Ring Road

I am playing this video back at double speed.  It shows me making two circumnavigations of the city of York by bicycle, although I didn’t strictly follow the ring road on one of these laps. As you can see, there are a couple of stretches of the route where a motor car travels faster than bicycle, but on the entire length route a bicycle is a faster method of getting around than a car.  Why is this? Well the route is clogged with motor vehicles: the situation might be different at a “quiet time of day” (such as in the middle of the night).  The other advantage is that the bicycle can travel on roads where a car is restricted.

I did discover on Saturday that there are also roads where a bicycle is restricted (between 10 am and 5 pm).  I was asked by a cycling policeman to get off my bicycle and push it (as he was doing with his own bicycle). When I asked why, he informed me that there is a “foot street” scheme in operation whereby you can only walk on these roads in the city centre.  So I started to push my bicycle towards the outskirts of the city centre, and within 30 metres a car overtook me and the driver hooted while doing so.  I presume this was because I was in the middle of the road - the driver didn’t however hoot at the pedestrians in the road (behind and in front of me).  Meanwhile the cycling policeman was also behind me and viewed this, but didn’t intervene in any way.  I accept that he might be a cycling PCSO and was therefore unable to.  PCSOs are people with limited powers, but dressed up to create a uniformed presence.

I think this “foot street” scheme should also apply to drivers - they should have to get out and push their cars through the city centre!

Posted by bigblue on 10/04/2014 at 07:30 AM
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Wednesday, 09 April 2014
A bit of Route 65

A shared-use cycle path in York, along the River Ouse between Bishopthorpe Road and King’s Staith. I believe that this is a section of Sustrans cycle route 65.

Posted by bigblue on 09/04/2014 at 07:30 AM
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Tuesday, 08 April 2014
Not ducks

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Regardless of what the sign says, I know penguins when I see them. These were on sale at a street market in York this weekend.

Posted by bigblue on 08/04/2014 at 08:17 PM
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Monday, 07 April 2014
Découpage

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Recently I enjoyed reading about key pronunciation errors that changed the English language. Over the past weekend I spotted (in the window of a craft shop) a potential future change in English.

Posted by bigblue on 07/04/2014 at 05:06 PM
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Sunday, 06 April 2014
Route 66

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It’s difficult to get your kicks when the very people who build cycle routes and lanes seem hell-bent on building obstructions to cycling on them.

Posted by bigblue on 06/04/2014 at 10:52 AM
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Saturday, 05 April 2014
York Minster

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As seen from the Minster Piazza, with the statue of Constantine, AD 274-337, below. Constantine, the so-called Great, was proclaimed Roman Emperor in York in AD 306.

Posted by bigblue on 05/04/2014 at 10:25 PM
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Friday, 04 April 2014
A disturbing fact

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I discovered a dead bird in my hotel. The best thing I can say about it is that they have hidden it away under a table on the first floor landing. 

Near where I live some farmers seem to breed this bird for “sport” and inevitably there is a carnage on the country lanes when they are let loose to be shot: a large number seem to be taken out by cars.

Posted by bigblue on 04/04/2014 at 10:23 PM
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