Today’s picture shows a pair of charming twins enjoying some sunshine on a morning outing.
I was enjoying the same sunshine on a morning walk of my own. At 2° it was a touch too chilly to cycle so I decided to enjoy the fresh air of a wonderful morning while Mrs Tootlepedal went to sing in the church choir.
I wasn’t the only one. A number of gulls were at their posts taking in the rays as well.
The resident mallards were glinting in the sun as I walked along the Kilngreen.
I often imagine that mallards, with their clean blocks of colour, are produced by some painting by numbers kit of the sort that I used when child. They weren’t the only things in the Ewes Water.
As I strolled along, the gulls left their posts and wandered by, doubtless wondering whether I was a bringer of bread. They kept an eye out for possible food gifts.
And then flew off disappointed.
I walked over the sawmill bridge and although I was going to use the new path along the river, I thought it worthwhile to take a peek up the Lodge walks first.
As you can see, everything was looking very pretty in the low winter sun.
I returned to the new path.
It wasn’t long before I fell in with a heron cooling its heels on the banks of the Esk.
Although the sun was warm on the cheek, the snow has not finally left the hills round the town.
At river level though, it was very pleasant. I enjoyed the pine trees in the sun.
…both near and far.
Just as I was going to cross the river, I looked up at the hole in the tree trunk where the nuthatches had their nest last spring and to my surprise I saw first one and then another blue tit emerge from the nest site.
I caught a glimpse of a nuthatch nearby keeping an eye on things and it will be interesting to see what happens.
Because I couldn’t walk across the Scholar’s Field after I had crossed the river (it is entirely given over to building works for the new Primary School now), I walked back along the opposite bank of the Esk and I was glad that I did this because it let me look at a female goosander. My friend Jean has been telling me that they are always about but this was the first one that I had seen for some time.
I walked back along the Esk and then took a detour into the Park before going home. A fond dog owner asked me to take a picture of his dog. I was happy to oblige.
Since it was Sunday and I had already taken a picture of one church, I thought that adding another would be appropriate.
I like the added decoration of the poplar tree shadows focussing on the building.
I made my way home and was just making a cup of coffee for Mrs Tootlepedal on her return from the church when a shadow fell across our threshold. It was Dropscone on his bicycle. I was surprised because it was Sunday and with religious observance, Dropscone always plays golf on a Sunday morning. It turned out that he had gone up to the course but no one else had so he had turned to cycling round the morning run instead. To my delight, he had also carried three treacle scones round the course in his knapsack. We soon demolished these along with a few cups of coffee.
I did have time in all this excitement to look out of the window at the plum tree.
The good light let me catch a couple of quite sharp chaffinches approaching the feeder.
Mrs Tootlepedal was busy preparing the B&B rooms for a visitor who was walking in the neighbouring hills for a couple of days so she didn’t have time to come out cycling. I got the belt drive bike out and went round the same run as Dropscone had done in the morning but in the opposite direction. I felt that that I had already taken more than enough pictures for the day so I only stopped to take one more on my way. I Since it was Sunday, I decided to add to my church collection and here is the parish church at Canonbie.
I got back just in time to let Mrs Tootlepedal away for a practice at being a singing nun in the Sound of Music and soon welcomed our B&B guest who had been very lucky with the weather for his hillwalking. Disappointingly, he told me that hills had not been alive with the sound of music as he walked but that he had enjoyed the views.
Here are two bonus photographs courtesy of the fine weather.
A rare flower shot:
And a frog in the pond (I hope it doesn’t get frozen solid tonight):
I am continuing to feel pretty perky and I am hoping that the couple of days of feeling bad recently were just a blip.
The evening was spent quietly in cooking and lazing about.
The flying bird of the day, in spite of available chaffinches, goes to another cruising gull.