Level headed

Today’s picture is the roundel from the tip of a butterfly’s wing.

wing tip

It was a fine day from the start today so as soon as I had finished breakfast and had had a sustaining raspberry jam sandwich, I got the speedy bike out and set off up the road to Eskdalemuir armed with a banana and two cereal bars. In my shopping spree yesterday, I acquired a new little camera for my bicycle back pocket. I hope I will be able to do more justice to the passing scenes with it than with my old one. I took this familiar views of the Gates of Eden to show off the sunny morning.

Gates of Eden

I turned left at Enzieholm Bridge and made my way up to Bailliehill. Here I turned left again towards Paddockhole. The road surfaces around Langholm have been improved a lot over recent months so I was disappointed to see this large stack of logs at the top of the hill.


Logs stacked like this mean log lorries and log lorries mean damage to the country roads they drive along and that means dangerous potholes for cyclists, not to mention log lorry drivers on piecework who don’t hang about for anyone. Meanwhile the road was in good condition and the weather stayed good so I was really enjoying myself.  I stopped to take this picture of the Water of Milk running through a narrow valley above Paddockhole.

Water of Milk

After Paddockhole, I visited Waterbeck (stop for banana), Gair, Kirkpatrick Fleming, Gretna Green (stop for cereal bars), Chapelknowe and Glenzier before taking the road down to the top of the Canonbie by-pass and then home.

Whita Hill from the old A7
Whita Hill from the old A7

This made for a 45 mile round trip through contrasting countryside and I was back just in time for lunch so that was a very satisfactory start to the day.

Mrs Tootlepedal was tapping at the chimney when I got back but she had done good work on the lawn extension while I had been pedalling and she was soon out in the garden with rake in hand again.

gardener at work

Mrs Tootlepedal had cut bits from the edge of the existing lawn to make a curve round the edge of the new section and raked the soil up level with this edge. It was such a good day that we pressed on with filling up the low bits and raking off the high bits, followed by more firming and raking until finally we were ready to sow the grass seed. This was done and Mrs Tootlepedal raked the seed in while I hunted out stuff to keep the sparrows off the newly sown seed. You can see the completed effort here.

sparrow defence

Only time will tell if it works. Of course, we wouldn’t have such a big sparrow problem if some fool hadn’t been encouraging small birds into the garden in the first place.

This took up the afternoon but left me just enough time to see if the sedums had attracted any butterflies.


butterfly 2

butterfly 3

While I was watching the butterflies, there was a good deal of excited chattering from our chimney pot. I never found out what was so interesting up there.


I took a picture of a coal tit as a contrast to the bedraggled one yesterday.

dry coal tit

Mrs Tootlepedal made rabbit casserole for our tea which was a trip down memory lane to the time when rabbit was so common in our childhood that you might get served rabbit, which was cheap, in a less than scrupulous restaurant when you had ordered chicken, which was quite expensive. Her casserole was very tasty.

The next week will be spent waiting for the grass to grow.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

4 thoughts on “Level headed

  1. Fantastic shots. Somehow, I think the photographer has as much to do with that as the camera. I particularly liked the Gates of Eden. An appropriate name, I think.

    1. We’re never quite sure of which side of the gates we are on.

      I try only to buy foolproof cameras.

  2. Wonderful butterfly pictures and good luck with the grass. Hope the sparrows are put off by your efforts. The coal tit was splendid too.

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