Ilkeston - Golden Days
w/e 06 November 2011
All this week's pictures were taken
with a Kodak DX6490
About three weeks ago I went in search of some "Shades of Autumn"
and at that time I was a little disappointed that there was not
more colour on the trees. This last week however, the leaves
have taken on some lovely shades and provided us with what could
easily be called , some "Golden Days".
It was the island at the northern end of Chalons Way that first
brought the phrase to mind and I recalled the Sigmund Romberg
and Dorothy Donnelly song as sung by Mario Lanza for the 1954
film The Student Prince. The lyrics of the song include the line
"We will know life has nothing sweeter than its springtime"
but in the seasons of the year surely it is in autumn that we
experience the golden days of nature.
These images were captured on several days during the week and
the golden colour became more and more apparent as the days passed.
As well as the island at the end of Chalons Way, part of the
road itself near the footbridge at Hallcroft Road, is lined with
trees where the leaves were in various stages of the transformation.
The top of St Mary's tower in the town centre is just visible
on the left of the image.
And here too in the churchyard at St Mary's at the side of the
Market Place, the trees were shedding golden leaves in the Garden
On the same afternoon I walked down Pimlico and looking back,
again with a view of the church in the distance, it was a surprising
but encouraging thought to realise just how many trees there
are around the town centre. If you'll allow me to paraphrase
a saying from the California Gold Rush days "Thar's gold
in them thar trees."
Still within minutes of the town centre, there are even more
trees on the triangular piece of land between Oakwell Crescent
and St Andrew's Drive but here the trees that are a riot of pink
cherry blossom in spring were more of a brown colour than the
golden colour of many of those in neighbouring streets.
It was whilst walking up the tree lined Queen's Drive just as
schoolchildren were making their way home that another line from
the song - "Golden days in the sunshine of our happy
youth" - came to mind. Looking back to my own youth,
I recalled friendships made then that have lasted a lifetime
and wondered if the same will be said by today's children when
they look back to 2011. Judging by some of the language I overheard
I don't think their golden days from this period will be as "full
of innocence and full of truth" as ours were at that
Outside Toll Bar House as it is now called, another tree with
golden leaves stands beneath the top floor window of the office
where I worked in the 1970s and 80s. They too were some golden
days but back then the building was simply 1, Derby Road and
the tree wasn't even there then. It's growing now where Stanton
Road once met White Lion Square and even though the Square no
longer exists, having succumbed to the new island at the southern
end of Chalons Way, my generation still refer to this area by
its old name.
As the week wore on, more and more trees took on a golden appearance
and whereas three weeks ago I had to search for colour, this
week it was abundant both in Park Cemetery and on 'Illy 'Oleys,
either side of Cantelupe Road.
And even more so along the well-used footpaths in the area that
link 'Illy 'Oleys (to the right) with the Erewash Museum (to
the left after passing under Chalons Way) and the old St Mary's
churchyard (behind) with Chaucer School (ahead).
Near the museum it was not just the trees that were golden as
the fallen leaves were creating a golden carpet too. By the end
of the week many of the trees had lost even more leaves and were
taking on a much starker winter appearance. But it won't be all
that long before we'll be welcoming the golden daffodils again
and the final lines of the song will ring true once again: "We
will know life has nothing sweeter than its springtime. Golden
days, when we're young, Golden days." The truth of the
matter is, golden days can happen at any season and at any time
of life. The trick is to recognise them and treasure them.
Mario Lanza - Golden Days
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