Just next to the NEC are a few small man made lakes and these ponds were looking quite photogenic.
Anyone who has travelled to Birmingham will understand that it is as far from idyllic sandy beaches as is humanly possible. The road systems are enough to induce any kind of serious mental disorder, the many industries create novel pollutants and car parking is nigh on impossible. A little bit cruel but you get the picture. So in the few hours that I had there my challenge was to take photographs to make Birmingham look nice. To make it look a place that the tourist industry might promote, in the same way that this was attempted (?achieved) with cities like Bradford.
An hour walking around the car parks of the Hilton Metropole hotel at NEC and the car parks of the NEC found these photos below, well maybe the fruit and the Raspberry Bakewell came from inside the hotel. But this proves that niceness can exist in Birmingham after all.
A truly amazing hotel situated on the outskirts of Helsinki essentially by the edge of the sea and in a forest. The hotel has three buildings that are connected by tunnels. The rooms are warm, the people friendly, the hotel quite different. Well worth a visit. These photos were taken outside the hotel and in the foyer. The photos are all taken with the I Phone so not a great standard of course.
Scotland is really not an average place. Expectations of lochs and bagpipes are millions of miles away when one lands at Edinburgh airport. The surrounding areas are industrial if one is being polite. Driving along one finds places like “Ratho” ( is that Rat Ho, or Rath hoe?), that bring one to the worst roundabout in the world. Said roundabout has more traffic lights than the whole of london and all are set perfectly so that only one car can get through. Gridlock is not a possibility but a guaranteed state of affairs.
The motorways are tedious and even though fields are around they are invariably decorated with smoke producing buildings, towers and who knows what else. In short this is not the idyllic part of Scotland as one drives to Dunblane.
In Dunblane what used to be the Dunblane Hydro is now the Doubletree by Hilton………..which is the better? Double is actually not a bad description as they see fit to advertise : “Tea for two for only 31.50£”. Which is actually also the price of breakfast for two…………so one might then see why I chose not to donate money to this institution that wanted 176£ for a room for the night.
Lastly, it is good to see that the Tramway in Edinburgh is getting nearer completion and is being built at the airport. That will be joyful!