Monday, 20 April 2015
Dumbarton to Balloch. The River Leven Swamp.
As I had several other things to do on Sunday in the morning it was after 1:00 o clock in the afternoon before I was free to go out. Normally this would be too late for an adventurous day but the great thing about a bike is that 3 or 4 hours can give you a cracking ride through a variety of scenery in a short space of time. Not even stopping for lunch, as it was a great sunny day I tossed the bike in the car and 30 minutes later I was parked at Dumbarton. Mallard drake above.
Although it has improved a lot in the past 10 years, both in terms of new housing stock and in the natural quality of the surroundings, drugs, drink, gangs and poor employment prospects still blight this area and the current austerity drive certainly isn't helping with over one million now depending regularly on food bank handouts in this country thanks to government sanctions and a massive increase in low paid or zero hours contract jobs. Ironically, some if not all of the political parties that are currently campaigning for an end to these types of jobs have been found to be using them themselves, and even the Queen has given them the royal stamp of approval. Cake for some... crumbs for others. This world will never change. Suicide is the biggest killer of young people in the UK today, many times higher than knife crime, cancer or drug deaths. That's got to tell you something.
Well worth doing. By bike or on foot. If walking, regular trains take you back from Balloch or walk downstream to Dumbarton.
Smashing video here. Mountain and volcano scenery in majestic full screen HD then a collage of different and fast disappearing cultures around the world. The planet is the same size it always was but the difference now is any conflict or war zone seems to impact directly and immediately around the world thanks to ease of travel and instant communications. Trouble or instability in parts of Africa or the Middle East used to be too far flung to be relevant to Europe but now any conflict around the world is up close and personal the next day in all our lives.