Today’s picture shows a marigold. It was the brightest thing about the day.
It was another grey and windy day today so I gave the bicycle a miss and lent a hand in the garden instead. Because of the re-modelling of the flower beds in recent days, there was a large pile of material for the shredder. After breakfast, Mrs Tootlepedal and I got to work and within half an hour, the pile had been converted into a nice heap of compostable shreddings. It took a bit longer to get the shreddings stowed away in a bin and get everything swept up tidily but it was done by coffee time.
While we were drinking our coffee, we were visited by Dropscone who had been to Carlisle and had kindly executed a couple of commissions for us while he was there. His hip is still very sore and he was limping noticeably. It is taking him a long time to get sorted as he originally damaged himself two months ago.
We are being visited by two B&B guests this weekend who are basset hound enthusiasts who are up here for a basset hound fest of some sort and they arrived at lunchtime to drop off their cases. They have a dog with them but it doesn’t look like a basset hound to me.
I mowed both lawns with the winter mower and I will have to face up to spiking and top dressing them soon. I am hoping to employ two or three lads to help me out as the back probably wouldn’t stand up to doing the whole thing myself. If we get some decent weather, I will scarify the lawns first.
Mrs Tootlepedal went off to work in the afternoon and I had to stay in to welcome the B & B guests when they arrived properly. I took the camera out into the garden but the poor light and strong winds didn’t make for good photographic conditions.
The runner beans were very slow to start this year but in recent days they have begun to produce a crop.
The chives add a splash of colour in the veg patch.
I like these a lot and I asked Mrs Tootlepedal why she hadn’t planted more of them. She told me that they came from seed she had saved from some dark flowering nasturtiums in the garden last year. She had grown the seeds into little plants in pots and then planted them out in several places around the garden but only this clump had stayed dark and the rest of them had come up as the usual scarlet ones. I learn new things every day.
I spent some time sieving last years green compost which has now rotted down. It is is very satisfactory to turn waste into something useful.
I noticed that the little rose behind the drying green was making an effort to come out again but it is really being defeated by the constant rain.
The birds were busy at the feeder again today but this chaffinch, posing in the plum tree, won the prize for most handsome feathered friend of the day.
I was able to pick a few raspberries to add to the ones I had kept in the fridge and had just enough fruit to make a pound and a half of quick raspberry jam. It is very easy to make as it only requires three minutes fast boiling when you have added the sugar and you don’t have to bother about jam thermometers or testing for setting at all. It always works and is absolutely delicious.
In the evening, Mike and Alison Tinker came round and Alison and I enjoyed ourselves with sonatas, a division on a ground and a foxtrot which I have transcribed from a tenor sax beginners book and which goes very well on a flute. I have started to play the flute again since I took on the job of teaching Luke to play it and I am enjoying it, although the amount of puff needed for flute playing means that I can’t play for long without having dizzy spells. Recorder playing is a lot easier on the chest.
I had a pleasant surprise when our golf club match secretary came round with 12 shiny new golf balls for me which were prizes for winning a couple of the Wednesday medals during the summer. They should stand me in good stead for the winter competition which starts in two weeks.
He was telling me that he competes in a lot of triathlons and I was very envious because I would like to do a triathlon and could do the swimming and the cycling but the running would be impossible for me. He told us that lots of towns round about us have triathlons and they get hundreds of entrants.
Here’s hoping that the wind calms down a bit over the next few days.