17 October 2010

Wheel

On Saturday night it was our friend Fiona's fiftieth birthday party in the well-heeled village of Swanland, west of Hull. On a soundless starlit night, after the noise of Chinese fireworks had ceased, we released four large tissue paper lanterns into the sky. They soared quietly then drifted off towards the River Humber with their impregnated fire pads still flaming defiantly. Graceful and lovely to behold.

This afternoon, back in Sheffield, Mrs Pudding and I decided that today had to be the day to buy tickets for the city's temporary "Wheel". Similar to other big wheels in city centres around the world, this popular construction has stood on busy Fargate for eighteen months but I had read in the local paper that it is to be dismantled at the end of this very month.

It was late afternoon but the sky remained bright and clear. We rose in our little white capsule high above the rooftops and saw the centre of our adopted city as we have never seen it before. A military parade of sea scouts and cadet soldiers passed by beneath but we couldn't remember the occasion*. Mrs Pudding was a little unnerved, gripping her seat tightly while berating Mr Pudding for causing the capsule to swing as he sought photographic opportunities through the airborne bubble's various windows. "You're doing it on purpose!" she insisted.

Anyway, for the record, here are four snaps I took from The Wheel...
View up Fargate to The Telegraph and Star Building

Military parade reaches Leopold Street *

St Marie's Catholic Church

The statue of Vulcan atop the Victorian town hall

*The occasion was Trafalgar Day. In memory of 1805 when the British Navy under Nelson whupped the French and Spanish fleets.

10 comments:

  1. I'm a little antsy about heights myself, and under the same circumstances, I would not be very charitable to a companion who was "rocking the boat," so to speak. However, your views were spectacular.

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  2. Point taken ARKANSAS PAT. The wheel is/was 200 feet (60 metres) tall. By the way - my views are always spectacular and so are my photographs!

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  3. Do they include barf bags with that ride?

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  4. JAN Just because my wife was alone with me in a capsule doesn't mean she would need to be sick!

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  5. Wasn't it the commemoration of the Battle of Hastings this weekend?

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  6. Jenny - According to "The Star", the parade was to mark Trafalgar Day with sea cadets traditionally holding their marches on the Sunday before October 21st when of course all of us will be feasting and drinking to celebrate the anniversary of Britain's great maritime victory over the cowardly French and Spanish fleets in 1805.

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  7. That's you again on top of the town hall isn't it? Golden Saviour of the Parking Bay, CEO nobbler stick held aloft.

    We went on the Sheffield wheel last year after our daughter's graduation and a grand view it gives you.

    I'm particularly impressed that you managed to avoid getting the various window safety stickers in your photos that appear in most of mine.

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  8. Birmingham, Alabama, where Mrs. RWP and I happen to be at the moment, also has a large and famous status of Vulcan. This one is on top of a mountain, though, overlooking the city.

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  9. SHOOTING STAR I must admit that getting decent shots through the capsule glass was not easy. There's no way I would climb a town hall tower stark naked like that just to pose at the top but you might!
    RHYMES Our daughter saw that statue of Vulcan - much bigger than ours but both BHM Alabama and Sheffield were built on steel.

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  10. Blessed are they who go around in circles, for they shall be known as wheels.

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