Yesterday Vik and I were on a walk, and it wasn’t going so well – the walk leaders didn’t have a map, just instructions, and didn’t know where they were going, and that makes me so stressed. So when we got to the Cumberland Basin, we peeled off, and went to look at the river instead.
After the long, long winter, May has been pretty much perfect, and yesterday was a beautiful day. The sun was low in the sky, and the tide was very high, very still. We stood on the very end of the Cumberland Basin, looking at the bridge, and then down at the water directly below us. The first Entrance Lock gates had been opened recently, and clouds of silt were flowing into the river, at first slowly, and then when the second lock gate was opened too, very fast.
It’s one of my very favourite things, watching the clouds of silt under the water – the way they move, like eruptions, or something blossoming. It’s magical to me, and I always hope I’ll see it. Of course I wish I’d had my DSLR and tripod with me, as filming on my mobile has limitations, but still, I took nearly 50 snippets of film on my phone. I’m not posting all of them here, but check out how gorgeous it was. The light was changing, the water pressures kept changing too, and I was hypnotised. We spent about an hour and a half there, and then walked home, with everything looking beautiful. I also took a whole load of photos on my film camera (and UPDATE! they’re here).
The sounds to imagine are a base rumble of traffic from the Portway ahead to the right, and behind on the Plimsoll swingbridge; the piercing blackbird song coming from across the river ahead of us, other birdsong layered up; and the sound of the water flowing, with gloops as eruptions of silt hit the surface. The smell was of river-water on a hot day, so evocative and refreshing. Spring breeze on my skin and in my hair, the stone of the Harbour edge warm in the sun, and gently-rough on my hands and where I sat. The water was so high, it was only a metre and a half below us, and I was having fantasies of jumping in.
At first, it was relatively slow
Looking out across the river, the surface tensions were picked up by the light, but it was just too bright for my phone
Continue reading “Silt clouds in the Avon”