Today’s picture shows one of Mrs Tootlepedal’s gaudy tulips hanging its head with weariness.


I know how it feels because after yesterday’s excitement, my head was drooping a bit too although my joints were feeling pretty good.  I decided to give the whole system a good rest and enjoyed a day of leisure, rising late and waving Mrs Tootlepedal off to join the church choir while still seated at the breakfast table.  Of course I had woken up at 4 a.m. to see if the moon was about so that hadn’t helped.  It wasn’t, of course.

The most energetic thing I did was to refill the bird feeders.  This is quite steady work at the moment as we still have a large following of goldfinches and  siskins.

Not to mention hungry chaffinches too.

Towards lunchtime, I summoned up enough energy for a little walk by the river.  The cherry trees along Elizabeth Street were looking very pretty.

cherry trees

While I was looking at them, I heard a whizzing noise by my left ear.  It was an old friend passing.

low flying heron
It was flying incognito

It landed just up the river.

I spent a little time trying to catch a swallow in flight as they swooped across the river but they are nippy little things and would need a very fast shutter speed.  In a catch 22 situation, the brighter the light, the higher the swallows are likely to be flying.  They were quite low today.


I was greatly entertained by a female goosander which was doing a little fishing in the middle of the river.

goosander fishing

goosander eating

goosander going
Now off to find some more.

I walked on up towards the Sawmill Bridge, hoping to see a dipper or two.  I caught sight of a bird bobbing about in a dipperish way on a rock…

not a dipper

…but when I got home and put the picture on my computer, I saw that it wasn’t a dipper as its beak is too long and the colour not right.  Is it a sandpiper?  Perhaps a knowledgeable reader will help me out here.

I walked across the Castleholm to look for nuthatches.  I might have been more successful if passers-by hadn’t kept on asking in loud voices if I was looking for nuthatches but I did get a glimpse or two.

Going in
Going out

Strangely they always seem to carry something when they are leaving.  Are they tidying the nest?

I left the nuthatches and got a last glimpse of the Duchess Bridge upstream before the leaves hide it from view for the summer months.

As I walked past the manse on my way home, I stopped to take a shot of just some of the minister’s very fine chicken herd.

minister's chickens
Not as fancy as J M Goyder’s flocks but pretty fine.

After lunch, the sun came out and everything looked so inviting that I got the scarifier out and gave the middle lawn a light scarify and a mow.  It looked the better for it but we could do with some gentle rain and a bit of warmth to get the grass growing properly.

Mrs Tootlepedal was busy gardening and pointed out this lovely contrast…


We were waiting for some end-to-end cycling B&B guests and to pass the time, I looked out of the window for birds…


…and walked round the garden looking for new flowers…

A cornflower

..and occasional birds too.

A dunnock. They scurry about on the ground and never fly up onto the feeders.

I was very pleased to see a redpoll back as I think they are an ornament to any garden.

Here is one getting a quizzical look from a goldfinch.

Our  cycling guests arrived quite late which was not surprising as they had done 210 km.  They are Audax men and used to long rides but four days of 200 km plus is hard work for anyone, especially as they were not in the first flush of youth to say the least.  They are going to Perth tomorrow.   I felt quite tired just thinking about their journey.

Sadly, the moon for which I had great hopes, had found the only clouds in an otherwise cloudless sky.

moon cloudy

Still there was an excellent chaffinch of the day and a genuine chaffinch at that.

chaffinch flying


Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

13 thoughts on “Stay-at-home

  1. We refilled our bird feeders yesterday and the birds are very happy. They even let me get some photos of them that I used on my post today. I was very happy. 😉

  2. Our sandpipers out here in CA look like that only all tan. So you guys have a bed and breakfast too. I am even more impressed with your wife’s energy–not to denigrate yours. 🙂

  3. Surely the heron makes up for the miscreant moon? I am a fool for that heron. The chickens are quite nice too. It has come to me that your goosander is my merganser. I can see yours better.

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