Today I made a tragic mistake and took the A34 route towards my hotel in Birmingham. I have never been a fan of Birmingham as a city, always found it complex to get around, dreadful signage and usually cold. Today I am convinced that I am right. It took me over an hour to drive 8 miles from the M42 to Fiveways corner.
The traffic was the worst I have seen since Colombo in Sri Lanka, no signs of any use, appalling driving against reminiscent of Sri Lanka, but to see so many closed down shops was sad. In fact the only shops that looked open were a few fruit and vegetable purveying establishments and multiple Indian restaurants.
The city seems frankly just too crowded. Too many cars. Too many people. And far too many empty bus lanes. I am all in favour of bus lanes when there are buses to use them. I did this epic travel in rush hour and saw none. Just empty bus lanes with threats of execution if one strayed an inch over the line and entered the forbidden territory.
The result? I will never come here again out of choice. Why should I? Complex to reach, no obvious redeeming features and expensive. Sorry Birmingham,I am sure the people are very nice, but why do you live here?