Fly me to the moon

Today’s picture shows some Edinburgh gulls having a family outing at breakfast time  on the roof opposite my son Alistair’s flat.

gulls on roof

It was a windy, showery day today but if you picked your moment, there were opportunities to work and play.  I picked a dry spell to have another tentative pedal of thirteen miles just to keep my legs turning over.  Once again, my snazzy new GPS device told me that cycling downhill with the wind behind was the right way to go.  The wind was quite brisk so I was pleased to have had modest ambitions.

I got home in time to avoid a shower of rain which was very satisfactory.  I felt less tired and that was satisfactory too.

After lunch, the weather faired up a bit and I went round the garden.  There were good things to be seen….

peony
Looking down on a peony bowed down by the rain and wind. You get a lot of petals with a peony for your money.  You can buy them I believe to throw at people.

…and very bad things
.

sawfly
The evil sawfly caterpillars infesting my gooseberry.

Then it started to rain again so I went indoors.

siskin in the rain

Ten minutes later, it had stopped.  We have had a regular pair of dunnocks picking over the lawn but in the absence of my long lens, I haven’t been trying to shoot them.  Just for the record I took a shot today and it shows the brisk wind ruffling a few feathers.

dunnock

I went out to inspect my tomato plant in the greenhouse and was excited to see a lone flower.

tomato plant

My record for successfully growing tomatoes is extremely patchy but maybe this will be the year.  I am going to concentrate.

I retired indoors for a rest and admired the great number of sparrows that manage to feed on the fat balls simultaneously.

sparrows
Possibly a new family group

I found a moment when the weather looked set fair (for a while at least) and got the hedge trimmer out and gave the hedge along the road a short back and sides.

hedge trimmed

Mrs Tootlepedal wielded the brush after I had finished trimming and and barrowed off the clippings and she made a really good job of the leaving things neat and tidy.  I am trying to summon up the patience to put the trimmings through our shredder as I tend to find large clumps of un-rotted hedge leaves in the middle of an otherwise good compost heap if they are not handled carefully.

While I was outside, I took the camera round the back of the house to record an aquilegia which has self seeded in the middle of the potentillas along the dam.

aquilegia and potentilla
It must have jumped clean over the roof of the house.

The early blooming  potentillas are going at full steam ahead.

potentillas

In the garden, I spotted some hostas.

hostas
Plain and fancy

For the first time this year, there were quite a lot of bees buzzing around and the pond has a good stock of frogs.

frog and bee

The frog population may be thanks to the complete lack of ducks on the dam this year, coupled with no visits from any herons.

I enjoyed a bit of nature’s geometry…

plant patterns

…and went out to visit the honeysuckle which grows through the hedge and offers a pleasant perfume to the passing pedestrian.

honeysuckle

Exhausted by alliteration, I headed in. On my way back in, I took a picture to show that there are plenty of greens to set off the flowers in the garden.

greens

We had two returning B & B guests today, one of whom is a keen bird watcher on her way to study gannets on the east coast.  Before arriving, they had stopped off in a layby on the Langholm Moor in the wild hope of seeing one of our hen harriers and after quite a long wait wondering if they were in the right place and looking in the right direction, they were delighted to have seen a pair of them.  We were very pleased for them.

I went in to watch a bit of the tennis and then after tea went out again to try to catch a flying bird of the day.  I shot a sitting bird.

racing pigeon
Resting rather than racing.

This racing pigeon has been resting in our garden for some time.  We have contacted a pigeon fancier who might try to catch it and send it back to its owner.

Later in the evening, Mrs Tootlepedal and I went off to sing four songs with our choir at an event to honour Neil Armstrong.   Our accompanist wasn’t available so a passing young organist from Amsterdam (formerly of Langholm) kindly stood in at the last moment and, all things considered, it went quite well.

I am taking Granny south tomorrow and the forecast is looking iffy so it will be early to bed for me tonight.

This, believe it or not, is a flying bird (going away).

flying bird

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

22 thoughts on “Fly me to the moon

    1. They lurk on the underside of the leaves and maybe the birds just don’t see them. You are probably right about the spotted leaves. I am an ignoramus plantwise.

      1. Oh they’d love that. We have 4 baby blackbirds in a nest on top of their toy kitchen in the open fronted shed and they are banned from going anywhere near it. They also know that we have a raucous nest of baby wrens in the ivy by the back door but until they fledge we won’t see them. So the picture of the baby gulls made their day 🙂

  1. Mr. Tootlepedal (and Mrs T.) you do yourselves a great injustice with your comments on Langholm Sings at last night’s Civiic Reception commemorating the life of Neil Armstrong – the choir was excellent, and your introductions to each song were so funny. When you tried to get off the stage quickly at the end of “the gig” we all found that highly amusing too. What a fantastic conductor Sean Rae is, and earlier in the church his singing of Panis Angelicus was outstanding. Oh yes, and your garden still looks prettier than Ann Hathaway’s in Stratford upon Avon.

    1. I am glad that you enjoyed the singing. Sean is undoubtedly a very fine singer and the choir should be able to learn from him. I didn’t mean to lark about at the end. I just went when I was told because Sean hadn’t told us that he was going to say anything.

  2. I like the flying bird of the day: a feathered airplane with winglets and a madly spinning prop!

    And I agree with Ruth about your garden.

  3. Great colours in the garden, and a beautifully trimmed hedge and tidy pavement!
    Glad to hear that the choir did very well.

  4. To please your tomato plants you must greet them with a “Good morning” every day, talk to them and “tousle their hair”. Then they’ll reward you with a large harvest.

      1. Me too but I have an inexpensive one just for tomatoes. It gets all scuzzy with tomato pollen so one would not want to brush with it. Teeth, that is. It is said to mimic in a greenhouse setting the way the bees pollinate tomatoes with is more high speed vibration that brushing. Now I have to go buzz my tomato plants.

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