The dogs woke me up sometime around five and with my alarm set to five thirty it wasn’t worth going back to bed so I got dressed and took the puppies out for walkies.

I have, recently, reverted to taking the dogs out one at a time as they are much more manageable solo.

First out of then blocks was Gabby.

We headed for the cycle path which runs down to Arran Way and being nice a quiet, I allowed Gabby to run free giving her ample opportunity to sniff and do those things that dogs do.

At Arran Way, instead of the usual right turn, we continued along Auckland Drive to Shetland Walk and on to Windward Way.

We then continued to cross the opposite end of Arran Way before continuing along our ‘usual’ route.

Back home, I swapped dogs and Gabby and I repeated the walk.

Returning home the three of us had breakfast before I had to leave for work.

What’s in a name?

Chelmsley Wood was a huge housing development built in the late sixties by Birmingham Council to house around 50,000 people.
The estate was divided into thirteen areas with all the street names in each area being named after certain categories.
For example in area 10, the roads are names after islands. Other areas include cars (classic cars now!), rivers, birds, fish and cities.

After work, I returned home to attend to the puppies (Mrs. B. was at work and was going out afterwards).

With the dogs fed, I bid them farewell as I jumped in the car and headed for Kingsbury.

Instead of paying £3.00 to park in the water park (£4.50 if I’d arrived before 4pm) I picked a car park in Kingsbury village.

I was a little surprised to see a pay and display machine but after reading the board, discovered that I could park free for two hours and after after 6pm it was free anyway.

Even though it was free parking (for half an hour until six) I still had to obtain a (free) ticket.

From the village, I made my way past the church of St. Peter and St. Paul, across the River Tame and into the water park.

I made my way through the park passing the miniature railway and under the M42.

Instead of heading straight for the canal I detoured around a couple of pools first.

I walked along the tow path for about a mile before turning right into Middleton Lake RSPB reserve.

Half a mile later, I re-crossed The Tame on what I still consider the new bridge and made my way to the Tamworth road, passing the Cliff Lakes complex.

Cliff Lakes, on the site of what was The Midland Diving Centre) is a wet theme park where kids of all ages can take on obstacle courses and get extremely wet. They have undergone a bit of a makeover and have two new areas opening soon.

Exiting the site, I found myself on the Tamworth Road (although, I daresay, in Tamworth it’s probably called Kingsbury Road – actually, after checking the map, I discover that it isn’t!).

A short (100m) section of unpaved road led to a paved section which I walked along all the way back to Kingsbury after clocking up five and a half miles.