Just champion (with knobs on)

Today’s picture shows that fine photographer Sandy being presented with the shield for best photo in show at Canonbie this afternoon.

Sandy getting prize

The Canonbie Show was the main business of the day and I was up early and at Sandy’s door by ten to seven to go down to Canonbie to put our photographs up in the hall.  The arrangement would have been even smoother if Sandy hadn’t been expecting me to arrive at half past seven but he had a quick cup of tea and off we went in the pouring rain.

There was a big entry in the various photo classes and I was worried about a shortage of display space but the show had everything well organised and there was plenty of space.  It didn’t take us long to put the pictures up…

Canonbie Hall

…and you  can see the clever way that they used ziz zag boards to make best use of the available space.  You can also see the neon lights which didn’t do the photos a lot of favours as far as the colours went.  The pictures on the left hand side of the boards were rather gloomy but a village hall is a village hall and not the National Gallery.  There were some beautiful dahlias in the other corner of the room.

They must have taken great care to get these looking so good after all the rain we have had.

The drive home was accompanied by an even more torrential downpour and the roads were awash as we came to Langholm.  This didn’t bode well for the big golf competition that Dropscone was playing in and he told me later that it had had to be cancelled.

I dropped Sandy off and Mrs Tootlepedal took the car to a social morning for church choir members held by the choir’s director in Gretna.  I stayed at home at stared out of the window at the pouring rain.

blue tit

There were not many birds about.  I wonder why?

This may be the reason. I don’t mind buying bird seed but I don’t much like it going to feed cats at second hand.

The birds were staying firmly, if soggily, in the plum tree.

bird in plum tree

Pissed off pigeon

As there were not many birds about, I donned full waterproof gear and walked up to the town to buy some more fat balls.  The river was running in two tones, showing that there had been more rain along the course of the Wauchope than the Esk.

Two tone river
The view from the bridge.

On may way, I learned that a bowling tournament had also had to be cancelled but that a hound show was going ahead.  I thought of trudging through the rain to take a picture or two at the hound show but then I reflected that one beagle is very like another and went home and did the crossword instead. (For those desperate to see what a hound show on a wet day in Langholm would like, here is last year’s post.  I’m sure this year would be much the same.)

Mrs Tootlepedal returned and after a quick lunch, we set out out on new kitchen business.  The hunt was for knobs and owing to the strange ways of shops, we had to go to one large store to buy 43mm white china knobs and another to buy 50mm white china knobs.  Annoyingly, there were only five 50mm white china knobs when we wanted six so another journey will be necessary soon.

Having acquired out knobs, we made our way back to Canonbie and were pleased that the weather had brightened up considerably for their flower show.  As well as  flowers, veg and fruit, the show has many other attractions.  There are vintage tractors, vintage cars and vintage little machines that sit around going put-put and not doing much.  Here are the tractors…

tractors at Canonbie

..and here is one of the old cars…

Austin A40
It is sad when a car of a make that you drove as a young man turns up as an antique.  I wouldn’t like to drive it now though.

…and here is one of the static engine exhibits.  I liked this a lot.

static engine

The static engines run all afternoon and always have a serious looking fellow sitting on a chair taking pride in them.  I was impressed by this one.

static engine with canopy
I liked his foresight in coming equipped with a canopy.

It was a gorgeous machine.

It was buzzing round at a good speed.

We had stopped to watch a man making a wood carving with a chain saw when we met Sandy so we went into the hall with him to see how our photos had fared.  As I said at the top of the post, Sandy had won best in show with a very nice picture of a nuthatch and I hope we will get a chance to see it on his blog soon (hint, hint).

I had done much better than I had dared to hope and took two firsts, two seconds and four thirds and was able to walk around looking suitably modest.  All the pictures have appeared on the blog in the past year so readers can make their own minds up about the good sense or otherwise of the judge.  This was my first photo competition but I will certainly have another go, although I expect that beginner’s luck may well have run out by then.

My views didn’t do any good so I will have to pay some attention to getting better results in the department.   I think it is mostly to do with composition and light.  I had one or two single pictures of birds which I thought were nice but which didn’t impress the judge.  However, a set of four nuthatch pictures and a set of four busy feeder pictures did catch his eye.   A rugby and a horse racing picture also scored in the sport section.   Mrs Tootlepedal’s favourite from my pictures, a set of tulips, didn’t do any good but she thinks she might make an embroidery from them.  I hope she does.

While we were waiting for Sandy to get his prize, I sneaked another look at the dahlias.  They were still impressive, even after a day in a vase.


By the time we got out of the hall, it was a beautiful day and I made Sandy stand and squint into the bright sunlight while I took his picture.

A proud man
Sandy was justifiably chuffed.

Mrs Tootlepedal won a large bag of compost in the raffle so that rounded off a very enjoyable afternoon out.  When we got home there was a pause while the knobs were attached to the proper places and I mowed the still rather squishy front lawn.  I also found time to look at sunshine on flowers.


..and a nice set of clumps of grass.

If the weather had been better, the grass would be much more interspersed with cosmos and fringed with nasturtiums.

Then we got the bikes out and cycled a leisurely six miles up to Wauchope School and back in glorious evening sunshine.  I stopped as we went along to start practising on the views.


Finally we ventured nervously into the new kitchen to make our evening meal.  We hardly dare to touch anything in case we spoil it.  The meal was followed by a delicious dish of raspberries from the garden.  They have done well in spite of the rain.

Today’s bird is a distant buzzard, spotted by Mrs Tootlepedal on our cycle ride.

I never see a buzzard when I have the good camera in hand.


Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

10 thoughts on “Just champion (with knobs on)

  1. Just loved the title of today’s blog. Too bad the shop only had five knobs though, so frustrating! Congratulations on your wins at the show, I think some of your flower photography is well worth a first. Well done to Sandy too.

  2. Congratulations. Your photos delight me, and have allowed me to see birds–and the possibilities in life–in an entirely different way. Must go see what Mr. Gill has posted.

  3. Glad you picked up so many awards for your pictures, I guess it must be interesting to know what thé judge liked and what hé didn’t. Sorry you had such difficulty with thé knobs!

  4. Congrats on the photo awards. If the horse racing photo was the one I remember from the Common Riding post then I must agree with the judge.

    I like the vintage motors display. If I had an unlimited amount of free time I could imagine being involved in something like that.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: