Thursday, 20 June 2013

Wedges Mouthwatering Bakery

Thursday 20th June, 2013 by Major's Green on the Outskirts of Birmingham.
Heavy rain overnight gave way to a still morning with a little watery sun (it didn't last!). Before we moved off, R went to drop off the rubbish and saw that the McLaren showroom had got some new stock in overnight. Now if the Euro-Lottery would just oblige...
We had made good time thus far and so, in theory, didn't need to go anywhere today. However, the call of a locally renowned bakery called "Wedges" just two miles up the canal was too strong!
We expected to find a tiny local shop but to our surprise it turned out to be a splendid emporium. It sold a vast range of local produce and vegetables as well as bread, homemade cakes, sandwiches and even hot food. There was a full car park outside and a long queue inside. It was full of people buying sandwiches for their lunch or snacks to eat at the tables outside. Obviously a thriving business despite its relatively remote location - it is not in a village, just a large building facing half a dozen cottages.
On the wall outside we saw a notice offering various rewards for information about local crimes. Couched in Victorian terminology and quoting prices in pounds, shillings and pence, it was nevertheless dated 2013!
We returned and had a cholesterol free lunch (not) on MM.
After lunch, we continued on our way through deep cuttings with a canopy of trees above, very reminiscent of parts of the Shroppie.
We then came suddenly upon a town called Dickens Heath. This was described by the guide books as a "Town for the 21st Century" but came with a warning not to stray too far from the canal "...lest you get irretrievably stranded in the future". After drifting quietly through the countryside, the huge apartment buildings, with a massve ornamental waterfall in the centre, came as a sudden shock!

We moored for the night on the edge of Major's Green, but it is clear that we are now on the outskirts of Birmingham, although the guide books tell us that the next five miles to King's Norton Junction continue to be a "quiet, winding green ribbon" through the suburbs.

Certainly our mooring spot tonight has no indication of the presence of one of England's largest cities on our doorstep.
The rain held off all day, but in the evening it started to pour with rain.
Just perfect for the eve of Midsummer's day!
Today: 6 miles, 0 Locks and 3.3 hours.
Trip: 136 miles, 125 locks and 114.4 hours.

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