Today’s guest picture comes from our son Tony. When I looked in my files, I saw that I hadn’t used this fine picture of deer that he sent me a week or so ago.
We had a quiet start to the day but I had managed to get out on my shopping bike as far as the High Street and to come back by way of the corner shop by the time that Dropscone arrived for coffee and scones. We had hoped to find that the suspension bridge had been finally opened but it was still shut and we had both had to take the long way round.
However, Dropscone phoned when he had got home after coffee to say that not only was the bridge now open, but he had been the first person to cross it. Mrs Tootlepedal had business in the High street so she was one of the next people to go over it. I will wait and cross that bridge when I come to it tomorrow.
After coffee, I went out into the garden to do some some dead heading and lawn edging. I took a look round while I was out there.
I liked the nasturtiums at the front gate . . .
. . . and once again found that it was quite hard to photograph a dahlia without finding an insect on it.
A small tortoiseshell butterfly had discovered the sedum . . .
. . . which were still covered with bumble bees grazing placidly.
I had a rough count and reckoned that we had eighty to a hundred bumble bees of various types in the garden.
The butterfly (or a look alike) was still on the sedum ten minutes later but it had turned round.
It was an exciting morning in the garden.
Other insects were available especially on the mint and Michaelmas daisies.
There were definitely times when three was a crowd, but at other times, complex geometry seemed to discourage visiting.
I think that my favourite shot of the morning was this bee visiting a fancy dahlia . . .
I liked it so much that I took another one.
I have never thought of bees as being cuddly before.
There weren’t as many butterflies about as I expected, and this peacock butterfly looked a little part worn.
The dahlias continue to do well, and I liked the subdued colours on a cloudy day in this collection.
I had a last look round . . .
. . . and went in for lunch.
Refreshed by some soup and a couple of bacon and tomato rolls, I got my bike out and stretched my legs with a gentle ride round my familiar Canonbie circuit. The forecast suggested a minor possibility of rain and there were plenty of clouds about as I cycled up from Wauchope Schoolhouse and pedalled over the hill.
I did get one little burst of sunlight on my trip and it came just a I was passing the little wood at Hollows Bridge. It looked so inviting that I stopped and had a wander . . .
I looked at that bench from both sides . . .
. . . but tempting as it was, I didn’t sit down but was soon on my way across the bridge.
I was pleased to be moving again as there were some rather dark clouds looming up, but luckily they stayed away and I got home in the dry.
After a cup of tea, there was time for another walk round the garden with Mrs Tootlepedal. The nerines have arrived with a bang. One day they were hardly visible and the next they were out in force.
Mrs Tootlepedal is going to dig up the sweet peas soon. I will be sorry as they are still flowering, even though the flowers are too high for me to reach easily now.
The sedum was still covered in bees. They had spent the whole day there. The clematis is almost over and I had to look hard to find a decent flower. The lamium is indestructible.
I spent some frustrating minutes trying to get my camera to notice a blue salvia when all it wanted to do was to look at the drive.
I went in to cook mince for our evening meal, then have a shower, then enjoy a sibling zoom, then eat the mince (and tatties), and then take a moment to rest and organise some music.
The music was needed because our friends Mike and Alison came round in the evening, and while Mike and Mrs Tootlepedal chatted, Alison and I played recorder and keyboard duets. We are still honing our skills after a year and a half without playing together until recently but on occasion, we both played the right notes at the right time and the result was very harmonious.
Once again, the garden birds were conspicuous by their absence and the feeder hardly went down at all today. As a result there is no flying bird of the day, but I did move my position and manage to persuade the camera to notice the blue salvia at last. It is the flower of the day.