Today’s guest picture comes from my brother Andrew. He visited this fine church in Melbourne, Derbyshire yesterday.
We had another grey morning here with a very brisk wind making it feel quite a lot chillier than the thermometer said that it was. Sandy came down for coffee which brightened the day up a bit.
After Sandy left, I went out into the garden to check on snowdrop developments and saw the new hellebores waiting to be planted, a great mass of nasturtium seeds lying on the ground, obviously of no interest to passing birds, and quite a nice display of snowdrops along the back path.
Perhaps because of the strong wind, there was hardly any bird action at the feeder today. Indeed, this goldfinch was the only bird I saw on the feeder itself all day.
After an early lunch, I went for a walk round Potholm to give the new heels on my old boots a good test. You can never tell whether re-heeled or re-soled boots will be as comfortable as the originals until you try them. The boots were very satisfactory and I enjoyed my five and a half mile walk.
I saw the resident oyster catcher . . .
. . . and was very pleased to find that it had a friend too, although the friend was shy and evaded the camera.
The feeder along the Lodge Walks was busy. I saw a long tailed tit, two chaffinches, a robin and a blue tit in the brief time that I paused to look . . .
. . . and wonder of wonders, a few yards further on, I got another glimpse of the tree creeper creeping up a mossy tree trunk.
I walked on and enjoyed a sunny moment on the low road which faded away before I got to Holmhead where I found the the snowdrops there were putting on a fine show.
Heading along the Langfauld, the sunshine always seemed to be a bit further up the road and the light was strangely flat as a result. It was pleasant walking though, as the brisk wind was behind me and pushed me up the gentle hill towards Potholm.
At Potholm, I admired the snowdrops on the banking below the farm house and crossed the bridge when I came to it.
I was now walking straight into the chilly wind, and I made hard work of the mile and quarter along the road until I got to the shelter of the trees at the far end. I noted the bright green lichen on the wall beside the road and the heavy traffic that I passed on my way.
Rather than walk back along the main road, I took the path through the woods down to the Duchess Brig, being grateful for the luck that meant that many uprooted trees had not totally destroyed the path, and for the skill of the men who had cleared the trees that had fallen across it in the big storm.
While I had been out walking, Mrs Tootlepedal had been tree hugging again, this time in the company of an expert. She added a new ancient tree to the records when she got home.
There were still no birds visiting the feeder.
We had a quiet evening in.
The only flying bird that I saw today was a fleeting glimpse of a jackdaw flying over the garden. It was seen through a window.