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Thursday, February 15, 2007

Wreckless at Rhossili

I had absolutely no sleep on Tuesday night. I simply couldn't get comfortable. Plus I developed the most horrendous heartburn, and had nothing in the house to treat it with. When Wednesday dawned bright and sunny, I had originally intended going no further than town, as I set out to buy some antacid tablets. But on a whim, I grabbed my camera, on my way out. When I reached town, I decided that no matter how cruddy I felt, I couldn't waste a sunny day. God knows when we'll have another one. So after grabbing some tummy pills and a few items for a packed lunch from Tesco, I hopped on the next 118 bus to Rhossili.

Alas, by the time the bus reached Knelston, I started to feel violently ill. The bus was packed, noisy, baking hot and airless, yet no-one else seemed troubled. My attempts to open a window were met with protests from old grannies, a group of die-hards who had simply hopped on for the free round trip, and didn't intend getting off to face the Gower elements. I spent the rest of the journey with my eyes shut, as the motion of the bus, and the hedgerows flashing past, made me feel horrendous. I don't know what it is about Pullmans buses, but they always give me travel sickness. I never had any such problems on the rickety old First buses. But the last few times I've been to Gower, I've been glad to get off the bus. I think some of their drivers go much too fast for comfort, and their buses are always over-heated.

I didn't feel any better when I got to Rhossili. It was a lovely day, not too cold for the time of year. But my tummy was really sore by now as well, even though I'd cured the heartburn. I abandoned my plans to head onto the beach to go wreck-hunting, which is just as well. Not only had the tide come in much faster than I'd expected, and covered the site, but I've since discovered the wreck isn't a wreck after all. Despite feeling vile, and having taken the decision to return to town on the next bus, I decided to make the most of the hour or so I had at Rhossili.

I encountered the usual selection of sheep, none of whom seemed especially perturbed by me sneaking up on them. I didn't know whether to laugh or be annoyed by a preposterous character, who was also intent on photographing the sheep and scenery. He had a huge SLR camera slung around his neck, with a lens the size of a surface-to-air missile. If I wore something like that around my arthritic neck, I'd need an ambulance. This guy proceeded to adopt all sorts of ridiculous poses, with his bum sticking out so far I felt tempted to boot it. I know a few people like that. They have all the gear, adopt all the exaggerated poses, yet their pics are usually mediocre or worse. I'm no great photographer, just an average amateur snapper, but even I know there's so need for eighteen inch long lenses and ridiculous acrobatics, in order to get a decent pic. The poor sheep looked bemused by him too, so I decided to wait until he moved on, to take my shots.

I realised I wouldn't be able to get much further than the point I was at when I took these shots. I really did feel ghastly.

I decided to shoot a video, and was merrily filming away, when I suddenly realised my lens had captured the return of the big-lensed, protruding arse man. So yet again, I had to await the departure of the posturing twerp, before I could capture this short clip. The quality's not wonderful, as my camera only does very basic video capture, but it gives you a taste of how nice a day it was.

I was about to head back, when a glorious bird song caught my attention. I thought it was a blackbird at first but after listening for a while, I realised it was probably a robin. Cursing the fact that I don't have a digital audio recorder, I thought I'd capture the song with my camera. Alas, the video just shows a clump of gorse and brambles, with no sign of the robin hidden deep within. However, his song has come out really clearly on the soundtrack.

Realising my bus home was due in less than twenty minutes, I headed back to the bus stop. I'd packed my camera away, but soon took it out when a little gang of sparrows arrived, and dived into a puddle with much glee. The pictures aren't the best quality. Every time I edged closer to them, they flew away, and I had to wait, each time, still as a statue, for them to get the courage to return.

Just as I got close enough to take some decent shots, the bus arrived and sent them packing. It was just as well. As the bus turned around, it drove right over their paddling pool. The return journey was far less stressful, as no-one objected to me having the windows open at the back of the bus. The fresh air made me feel so much better. As I was back in town by around 2pm, feeling a little healthier, I was able to contemplate another trip. It seemed a shame to go home, with a barely used day ticket in my purse. So I hopped on a Newton bus, and headed for Langland.


The Pig's Lip said...

Beautiful pics - looks cold though

Jeremy said...

Pity you didn`t capture any pictures of that guy with the big lens. He sounds like me!
The bird singing in your video is definitely a Robin.
Nice pics!

Siani said...

Thanks, guys. It wasn't especially cold, considering the time of year. Mind you, I was pretty well insulated.