Two pedals and a toddle

Today’s picture came to mind when Dropscone and I were drinking a plain cup of black coffee from simple tea cups.  They do these things differently in France as this picture from his recent holiday shows.

ife in France
Pretty to look at but could you actually spoil it by drinking it?

We had yet another dry day today and although it was still hovering only just above zero when we got up, the bright sunshine more than made up for that.  I was considering my plan for day, which included a lazy breakfast, maybe a cup of coffee or two and then a pedal when the phone rang.

It was Dropscone.  I was amazed for as regularly as clockwork on a Sunday morning, Dropscone plays golf.  On this occasion though, owing to the ill health of  two of his regular companions, he was left with no one to play with so his mind had turned to pedalling.   My plans underwent hasty revision and I finished my breakfast quickly and got well wrapped up to face the chilly wind instead of lazing about.

It was just as well that I did get well wrapped up because our chosen route up the A7 to the Mosspaul Hotel was straight into the wind which was blowing quite briskly.  Still, we put up with the extra effort as we knew that we would be rewarded by a strong following wind on the way home.  Life is often not quite organised in the way you would like it to be and by half way down the road home, the wind had dropped and by the time we got back to Langholm, it had disappeared completely.  We felt that we had earned our cup of plain coffee…..and a treacle scone or two.

Mrs Tootlepedal had just come back from singing in the choir church and found herself very disorientated with Dropscone and treacle scones appearing in the kitchen on the wrong day entirely.  It will probably put the whole of next week out.

I hadn’t taken my camera with me on the bike but when Dropscone left after coffee, I put it in my back pocket and set out for a small bonus ride up the Wauchope road. The wind had got up again and I was pushed along by it on my outward journey.  It was still  a lovely day and I stopped from time to time to take a picture on my way.

A field squeezed in between the road and an escarpment.
Some of our local residents

It has been so rain free lately that the roads are getting quite dusty with the remains of the grit put on in frosty conditions.  I could see that a party of cyclists had preceded me up Callister.

Making tracks

I got to the top of the hill, looked around…

To the west down towards the Solway
To the east at my road home.

… and set off back down the hill.  This time, of course, the wind didn’t drop and I had to push hard to get back.  Still, as I read in Gerry’s blog that he had had to face 50 kph winds on a recent long ride, I shouldn’t complain.

I just had time to watch a bit of the track cycling world championships on the telly when I had sat down before the Scotland-Ireland rugby match came on.  I mistakenly decided to watch this too and it turned out to be a very bad match only redeemed by the fact that against the run of play (to say the least) Scotland won.  Still, they have have played quite well and lost so often that playing badly and winning made a welcome change.

I felt that I had rather wasted a good sunny day for photography by sitting too long either on my bike or in my easy chair so when the game finished, I went for a short walk.  The sun promptly went in.

I chose my usual route past the Kilngreen and around the Castleholm.

The gulls were at their posts again.
Except this one which had abandoned its post in the hope of breadcrumbs.
a pair of oystercatchers
A pair of oyster catchers.

It was a bit late in the day for views and landscapes without an evening sun to light them up so my eye was drawn to details as I passed them.

fence posts
A pile of fence posts in the Estate’s yard
fence posts
The same pile seen from the other end
A good selection of moss and lichens on the wall opposite the yard.
aerial fern garden
An aerial fern garden
mossy trunk
What stops the moss growing all round the trunk?
school fence
The school fence could do with a lick of paint.
spring moss
Moss showing signs of spring on a tree branch

There was still enough light when I got home to have a quick turn round the garden to search for more signs of spring.  I found some definite potential.

spring flowers
From top left clockwise: pulmonaria, winter aconite, daffodil, crocus

Although I had to fill the feeder several times, I didn’t find any time to stare out of the window today and this flying chaffinch was the only garden picture that I took all day.

flying chaffinch

Sandy has put up a post with some very nice archive pictures as well as some excellent views from our outing yesterday.













Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

14 thoughts on “Two pedals and a toddle

  1. The moss usually only grows on the northern side of trees as it never sees the sun. Its a useful navigation device when lost without a compass. Another is that TV satellite dishes always point more or less south.. 😉

  2. I like that old school fence with the paint worn off.. and those seagulls on the posts are very amusing. you live in a beautiful area. 🙂

  3. In our climate moss tends to grow on the north side of trees as it is more shady. I don’t know if that holds true in your area where it seems that a person who stopped walking for a few moments might be engulfed by the stuff.

    The fence posts take me back to a summer job when I was in university. I spent several months working at a pasture driving in fenceposts with a big sledgehammer. It was a surprisingly idyllic job.

  4. They do everything differently in France, but I’m sure that you already knew that. If you ever figure out why the moss stops as abruptly as it does on that tree, please let me know.

  5. I love the stone walls around the field, and the tree full of ferns is something I don’t think I’ve ever seen. It’s nice to see the flowers-especially the pulmonaria. Mosses don’t have roots so they dry out quite fast, and that’s why they prefer the shady side of a tree trunk. Usually if you see moss growing in the sunshine it is growing on moist soil or has another source of moisture.

  6. The views from the top of the hill were splendid and I liked the very varied pictures you took on your walk. Signs of spring have definitely arrived in your garden too, lovely.

  7. I think David Hockney could have made something of those striking fence posts as he did with piles of logs.

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