deep borders

My Walk this Week 218 – Botanical

My walk this week is in the recently re-opened Swansea Botanic Garden and Singleton Park. The Botanic Garden is within the park and had been closed for the coronavirus lockdown.

Swansea Botanic Garden

And thinking of lockdowns and locks, the sound of a garden attendant locking up at an earlier time than would normally be the case, is featured in the soundscape below and took us a little by surprise. We had not been there very long but enjoyed continuing our walk in the park, taking a different route from that on our last visit.

The garden and park were looking beautiful with so many flowers on display, it was a real pleasure to be there and sit quietly for a short while looking at all the colours and listening to the birds and ambience of the area.

What would we do without these natural (albeit cultivated) spaces in our urban landscapes?

Botanic Soundscape

silhouettes

My Walk this Week 217 – An Evening on the Marshes

My walk this week is back on my local salt marshes where the evening was still and the midges were out in their millions.

I went down there for the sunset and then had my back turned, recording sound, when it actually dipped below the horizon.

It was a still evening and there were not many birds singing but as always in this environment, there are gates – specifically four, but there were more people using them than just myself. I have included four in the soundscape but had I included all the instances of use on this short walk there would have been the sound of at least ten!

I understand and accept that by now you may think me obsessed with gates, and you wouldn’t be far wrong. Aside from the individual audio characteristics they have which I enjoy, they are symbolic of so much. They are way markers, milestones, entrances and exits simultaneously, thresholds, limitations, invitations – and they come in so many designs!

There is a bird that appears in the recording at about 01:10 – it was in the woods at the edge of the marsh but I do not know what it is. If anyone can tell me, I would be pleased to know. The Covid-eased traffic is ever present on the motorway but I have focused more on the other sounds in the trees and on the marshes.

Marshes Evening Soundscape

The images below seem not to show on the WordPress Reader any more, though the audio player does, so if using the reader, please visit the website by clicking on the three vertical dots on the right of the blog name to bring up a menu allowing you to visit the post on the website.

thistle and path

My Walk this Week 216 – Returning To What Was

My walk this week takes a look and a listen to what was at one time a railway track. Listening to the soundscape for the walk also means returning to the sounds we were used to pre-pandemic.

The old railway track could still be seen in places when we first moved here many years ago. Things have changed significantly over that time and this part of that old rail route has become a wonderful slice of wild woodland. Unfortunately I suspect its days are numbered as the ever encroaching local housing and road developments continue apace and I was sorry to find my way blocked by a building site.

The soundscape below could have been edited down further. Although there are few birds singing at this time of day, I still enjoyed the sound of the wind in the trees and even the nuances of the distant motorway traffic. Returning to what was, pre-pandemic, means inevitably more traffic on the roads, jet aeroplanes in the sky (listen carefully) and of course the sirens of police cars. This last one I decided not to include and is the point at which I stopped recording.

Old Railway Woodland Soundscape

 

My Walk this Week 215 – Cycle Path 2

My walk this week repeats the route along the cycle path I posted about a few weeks ago, but to my surprise there were more differences on the walk than I expected.

I thought it would be a challenge to present a different post about the same place so soon, but it seems my lack of a sense of time extends beyond the delay in writing this post (I have been a day behind in my head all week) to a perception that less time has passed since I last walked this path.

The wild flowers in bloom now, compared to those a few weeks ago, demonstrate the fast pace of natural changes at this time of year. While I enjoyed the patterns and textures of my last walk there a month ago, it is wonderful to see the rosebay willow herb and other wild flowers come back into colour.

Cycle Path Soundscape

The photos and sound were again recorded on my iPhone and due its sensitivity to wind, the soundscape above is shorter than my usual. Hopefully you will still enjoy it while looking through the images.

The pool in the river is empty of children this time but shows that idyllic spot on a Summer day where, on my last walk there, you could hear the sheiks of laughter from local youngsters making the most of a hot day and ignoring the Covid-19 lock down advice on social distancing.

My Walk this Week 214 – Park Positive

My walk this week is in Singleton Park, Swansea and took advantage of the slight relaxation in the Covid-19 lockdown measures. Whether it was right or not to do this with regard to the coronavirus pandemic, it was a very positive thing to do for the sake of my mental wellbeing.

Sheltering under the trees from the rain I took advantage of the pause in our walk and snapped a shot or two, including the crushed wild garlic that was giving off a wonderfully powerful scent.

Once the sun reappeared the clover shone like jewels in the open grassland of this expansive urban park. While the botanic garden was closed due to the difficulty of distancing, the rest of the park-scape caused no problems in this respect and everyone there respected the social distancing advice.

In the smaller Brynmill Park on our return, this was a little more problematic, but people mostly did what they could to maintain a distance and the lake there is a popular attraction.

Park-scape Sound Clip

I have not called the audio above a soundscape because recording on my iPhone as I was and that not taking well to the wind, I did not capture as much sound as I would have liked.

The media player does not show on the WordPress Reader, so please visit the website to listen to the sound clip and view the images at the same time.

kissing gate 1

My Walk this Week 213 – Eight Gates

My walk this week revisits a walk with eight gates from two years ago. In fact there were nine gates on the walk but the gate to the old churchyard on my local marshes was open and so is not included in the soundscape below.

Churchyard gate

The old St Teilo’s churchyard is a fabulous place and the walk across the marshes, alongside the River Loughor is also a local route I enjoy immensely. I am sure many of you already know how much I enjoy the sound of gates and if you do too, then the soundscape below will not disappoint.

They are all included in my recording for this walk but appear at shorter intervals than in reality.

Marsh Gates Soundscape

 

If you can listen to the soundscape on headphones, you will hear more easily the subtleties of all the layers and textures of the place – but no worries if you can’t. In any case, listen out for the sounds of my feet brushing through different kinds of grass, the breeze blowing through the tall marsh grass (one of my favourite sounds), the various bird calls and warnings, the intricacies of nearby passing traffic, and of course the gates – each one has its own individual characteristics.

new growth, June 2020

My Walk this Week 212 – Back Through the Park Again

My walk this week revisits a walk taken in our local park in June two years ago. There have been some changes to the park in that time, but I was focusing on the natural growth then, just as I do now.

playground

The last two photos in the sequence below were in fact taken in April and then June this year and show the stump of a tree in the middle of the footpath through the woods. The stump of the cut tree clearly refused to die and the photo from June demonstrates its determination to live and thrive again.

The recording I made two years ago, of a song thrush in the woods has not lost any of its beauty for me, so although I do not have a soundscape from June this year, I have enjoyed listening to this again and I hope you will too.

Song Thrush in the Woods

The media player does not show on the WordPress Reader, so please visit the website to listen to the sound clip and view the images at the same time.

view from the path

My Walk this Week 211 – Straight Along the Cycle Path

My walk this week is straight along a local cycle path that I have not walked along in the current season for a few years.

Gorseinon Cycle Path

I used to walk this path every weekend during school term time when my daughter was in dance classes nearby. Whether raining or sunny, the walk is a beautiful one and twice the length I walked of it this time as I waited for my car in a local garage.

As with my previous walk on the marshes last week, the path was busy with walkers and cyclists – everyone taking advantage of the good weather and some going for a play about in a secluded pool in the local river. You can hear the laughter and voices of youngsters enjoying themselves in the soundscape below.

Cycle Path Soundscape

All photos were taken on my iPhone and also the sound recording, which suffered a bit from the breeze.

The soundscape media player does not show on the WordPress Reader, please visit the website to listen to the soundscape and view the images at the same time.