Saturday Saunter: Railways and trees

Good morning,

Welcome to another Saturday Saunter, being written a week in advance. Great Continental Railway Journeys is on in the background, Michael Portillo in his bright breeks being shown round the post office in Palermo as I type these words.

Bridge of Weir railway path: a model train with red wheels high on a plinth on a cycle path with trees in the background.

I’m a firm believer that connections can be found anywhere between just about anything, even if they are not initially obvious. In the last couple of weeks, different places I’ve visited have been connected by old railways or more precisely old railway paths. I like that old railways have been repurposed into paths and cycleways even though trains running on them might be better. I was in Bridge of Weir the other week and to kill time I walked along part of the path which links it to Paisley and Greenock. A train adorns the sign which can be seen from the road, the path winding through the trees in a fairly straight line towards a bridge where the river Gryffe can be seen, running strong due to recent rain when I was there. I also walked on part of a railway path in Aberfoyle more recently. Aberfoyle is a pleasant place in the Trossachs and I hadn’t been there before, more than likely because there isn’t a rail link. An old signal stood at the start of the path, like another seen earlier in the day in Callander.

A railway which has become ever more popular recently is the Borders Railway, which runs from Edinburgh to Tweedbank. It reopened just over five years ago, though only part of the Waverley line which ran as far as Carlisle. I’ve been on it a couple of times and the run to Tweedbank can be quite beautiful as the train leaves Edinburgh, all trees and rolling hillside.

We are now well into September and our weather has been rather autumnal recently. The colours of the trees are changing and the sun is setting earlier. I like the trees, not so much the nights drawing in. The trees by the road which I mentioned a few weeks ago have been turning yellow and soon they will be orange and then bare once more.

Our different perspective is from the BBC News website and it is about Maja Antoine-Onikoyi who has been donating books to people who cannot afford books about black history and racism. Reading combats ignorance and projects like this are excellent.

Finally, I’m bursting in quickly this Saturday morning to talk briefly about Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the United States Supreme Court justice who died yesterday. She did incredible work to uphold justice and work for equality. Even on this side of the Atlantic, we can do worse than learn from her example and what she achieved over a long career.

Anyway, that’s the Saturday Saunter for today, Saturday 19th September 2020. Thanks for reading. Streets of Glasgow returns on Wednesday. There won’t be a Saturday Saunter next Saturday as I will be away. Until then, keep safe, keep well. A very good morning to you all.

4 thoughts on “Saturday Saunter: Railways and trees

  1. I haven’t been on that railway path at Bridge of Weir, I love the wee train! On the other hand, I was surprised that you hadn’t been to Aberfoyle before, somewhere we go quite often, but of course, you’re right, it would be very difficult without a car. Hadn’t seen the article about giving out books before, that was interesting, and of course I agree about RBG. Seems like Trump’s lot are going to rush through a replacement to tip the balance to the right. I’m always astonished at how undemocratic most democracies are!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aberfoyle was nice. The drive up was gorgeous. As I grew up in East Lothian, there are still places in the west which are unknown to me after all this time! RBG is a huge loss and the fact that they’re hoping to push through a successor before the US election is shameful.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I watched Great Continental Railway Journeys too. Despite my dislike of him as a politician, I can’t stay away from Portillo and his railway journeys! I went on Facebook the other night when I woke up at 4 am with stress-induced insomnia (always a mistake) and saw all my American friends bemoaning RBG’s death and talking about their fears for the future. Sad what Trump and his cohorts are trying to do, but even sadder that the future of democracy in the US was seemingly resting on the shoulders of a terminally ill 87 year old in the first place. There should be more barriers to fascism than that!

    Liked by 1 person

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