Where I live is high up and exposed the front of the house faces east the back west. We have snow before anyone else and if we have icy conditions we have it a lot worse.
I decided to leave the car and travel by public transport. Tuesday January 29th, I walked out wearing waterproofs hat, gloves and good walking boots ready for a down hill 1 mile walk to the train station. The air was damp but with an icy edge to it. Suddenly I began to slip I quickly steadied myself and carried on, then I slipped again. Black ice! I was surrounded by black ice. I took a deep breath and gingerly walked on the edge of the road, pavement and paths. I also warned others about the black ice. Caught the train to my place of work, I arrived at my destination and a mile walk to work along a cycle track that was empty of bikes, dog walkers and runners. Return journey home was all up hill but I felt good. I received three good mornings and had one chat. We had snow Tuesday afternoon and during the early hours of Wednesday. Wednesday 30th was icy and a sharp frost that left Arabic art on the back of cars. The roads were gritted thank you Caerphilly CCBC. Walked under a mile to my local train station Gilfach Fargoed Halt, Gilfach Fargoed Halt is the only train station that’s situated in the middle of a country Park in whole of Wales. Today’s train journey was further and a longer walk to my place of work too. The park leading to my place of work was liken to Christmas cake white, with tufts of brown peaking through. Tits, robins, black birds were everywhere. The wind whipped at my face flushing my cheeks to bright red, I had five good mornings and to nods.
Thursday 31st January I walked a mile to my place of work, down an old lane I captured the hoar-frost and ice.
From here I had to get to my next job and this meant catching a bus to Nelson, I did not catch a bus! A friend gave me a lift and was I grateful? Yes because it was bone aching cold and heavy snow was due that day. I could smell snow and saw the sky change and the wind too. My return journey home I walked the back of Llancaiach Fawr to the bus stop, when I spotted a black landdrover leaving the manor house at Llancaiach Fawr. The driver stopped at the bus stop and offered me a lift. I refused and said I did not know him. He replied he was driving to Gelligear and could drop me off there. I took a deep breath and listened to my inner voice and my invoice said do not worry he is an honest man. Mark Evans was his name and he was a real gentleman, and he gave me a lift to within a mile from my home. Friday 1st February another train journey another mile in the snow but the roads were gritted and the trains were on time. I walked a mile and half to my place of work over the old viaduct at Hengoed and through a small wood. I had many hello’s and mornings, I also chatted with a cyclist on the train, yes a cyclist cycling in the snow.
Transport Wales who had recently taken over from Arriva trains were on time, the stations were gritted, staff were kind and the trains were cleaner. A guard at Transport Wales told me that we will be having better trains soon. I found by using public transport I felt happier, fitter and it was good to talk with people I had never met before and I might continue with public transport.
A big thank you to Caerphilly CBC for the hard work at all hours and the gritting.