Back again

Today’s picture shows the sort of thing you can expect to see if you are cycling in Texel in the Netherlands.  Fiona, my Newcastle correspondent, was there on holiday.  The power is being provided by Hannah.


Dropscone and I had a pedal too but not on a tandem.  To avoid the danger of racing our time of yesterday and either wrecking ourselves by going too fast or disappointing ourselves by going too slow, we chose a different route.  There was quite a brisk wind in our face on the outward journey to Waterbeck but a corresponding helping hand on the way back.  I didn’t quite have the joie de vivre of yesterday but we got round in a satisfactory time.

I concentrated on white in my walks round the garden today.  I must start with another apology to the much maligned green and white flowered clematis.  It has lost its green tinge and is flowering constantly and effusively.  It’s a real delight.


It is still covered with buds and given freedom from night frosts, it should be with us for some time.

The Japanese anemones are also delightful.

Japanese anemones

And plugging away in the shadow of the white clematis, the white potentilla is also going well.


They all looked good in the sunshine which made for a very pleasant day today.

After coffee, Mrs Tootlepedal and I went up to fill the Moorland feeders as Sandy was at work.  There was very little to see in the way of birds so Mrs Tootlepedal took a wander down the path at the end of the glade.

Moorland feeders

Apart from some flourishing fungus…

Moorland feeder fungus

…and an inevitable pheasant….

It was skulking in some long grass

…there was nothing of interest as the woodpeckers seem to have vanished for the moment so we soon came home.

We were both doing some constructive resting after lunch when a tap on the window revealed that Sandy had returned from work.  My back was not being improved by doing nothing so Sandy and I set out on a short walk round the Castleholm to see if some exercise would help.  It didn’t but it was another pleasant stroll.

While I was waiting for him to change out of his working clothes, I enjoyed watching chaffinches perch on the sunflower next to the feeder.

chaffinch perching on sunflower

They were perching there because a belligerent siskin was keeping the feeder to itself.

belligerent siskin

I checked my neighbour’s buddleia for coloured butterflies.  There was only one.

buddleia and butterfly

The start of our walk was impressively green.

Lodge walks

We spotted a fungus soon after we had set out.


Round the other side of three was a strange fungaloid creature with a screwed up face stuck in a crevice.


The things you see when you learn to look.

The scenes were idyllic in the afternoon sun.

cattle grazing

I like the neatly cropped bases of the trees where the cattle graze.

Timpen hill

The air was full of the seeds of rosebay willow herb when the wind blew.  No wonder it is so prevalent.  It was almost like light snow at times.

I added another gate to my collection.


And some autumn seeds.


When I got back, I spent some time choosing and printing pictures out for Saturday’s show.  I managed to upset the printer and had to waste time and ink doing a ‘deep clean’.   Thankfully it worked just as I was envisaging having to buy a new printer.

After tea, Mrs Tootlepedal and I went to the first meeting of the season for Langholm Sings, our community choir.  It was enjoyable but quite hard as we got new music to sing and some of it was difficult.  I got a go at conducting and have three pieces which I am going to work up with the choir.  They are easier than the pieces which our musical director has chosen because I know my limits.

I am sorry if the blog has a rather disorganised air about it but my back resolutely refuses to co-operate with my well planned get-better-quick scheme and sitting typing is not the pleasure that it usually is at the moment.

Yet another chaffinch makes flying bird of the day.


Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

22 thoughts on “Back again

  1. Lovely photo of my Daughter Fiona and my Grandaughter Hannah. The Dutch are so far ahead of the British when it comes to family cycling. That is a very interesting Tandem and I wonder who did the steering Hannah or Fiona.

  2. I did, she is not to be trusted! It was very odd though, took some getting used to. Tight corners or u-turns were impossible. Lots of fun though. Thanks for sharing the picture Mr T.

  3. I’ve always wondered why some trees had such neatly trimmed bases and wondered why anyone would bother. I never gave cattle a thought. I love the shot of the pheasant.
    I’ve had enough back aches since I fractured my spine by falling out of a tree as a teen to know how you feel. Back pain is a terrible thing and I’m sorry that you are going through it. It’s good that you’re moving around in spite of it, though. Time alone will heal it.

    1. Finding the right exercise to loosen the offending tight muscle is the answer but this is a new variant and I am fishing around trying things without any success so far.

  4. The chaffinch must have learned that you almost chose the gull for yesterday’s flying bird, because it certainly posed nicely today.

    A relative of mine used to have trouble with his back At the first twinge of pain, he would put on a back brace that he kept just for that. He swore by the brace. Just a thought.

    1. I’m not a great fan of braces (although I had to wear a knee one to be able to play golf at all) because I think that they lead to muscle weakness which exacerbates the problem as often as not. Thanks for the thought though. All suggestions are always welcome.

  5. So sorry that your back is being difficult, what a bore for you, I do hope it pulls itself together sooner rather than later. I liked the white flowers in your garden, a splendid show.

  6. Much sympathy re the sore back – very tiring but you still managed to have a productive day and take lots of very good photographs.

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