Goings and comings

Today’s guest picture shows a bird in the hand.  Our neighbour Gavin found it actually in his house.  In spite of a bird in the hand being worth two in the bush, he let it go.

Gavin's bird in hand

It was a perfect day for cycling and had I got up early, I could have enjoyed a splendid ride before breakfast but sadly I didn’t so I couldn’t.  Instead, I got up late and made breakfast for Pat and Mrs Tootlepedal.

I had a quick walk round the garden after breakfast…

A fading geranium caught my eye

…and took the chance to mow the middle lawn while it was dry.

Then it was time for Pat to pack and we took her up to the town to have a look at the photo exhibition before driving her down to Carlisle to catch the train to London and home.

Pat is a keen political activist and we have learned a lot during her stay about the trials and tribulations of trying to get candidates elected to local councils.  It is hard and thankless work if your party is suffering from national disapproval.

When we got back to Langholm, I called in on Sandy who was curating our photo exhibition and he told me that we have been invited to leave the exhibition hanging for a couple of weeks more as the next exhibition is not due in until then.

I had another look round the garden when we returned to the house.  In the absence of any of the feathered variety in the garden at the moment, I am pleased to see the new arrival of a rose called Goldfinch.

Rosa Goldfinch

I had another tin of French sardines from Cannes for my lunch.  This one had the added delights of the flavouring of two pimentos and a ‘note of citron’.  I am moving upmarket in my (hypothetical) Mediterranean diet.

After a quick lunch, it was time for me to go off to do my bit as a tourist information volunteer at the Kilngreen.  I was visited by two sets of tourists and I gave them some information.  Over two hours this wasn’t very exciting but it was better than nothing.  The quiet time between tourists was brightened up by a visit from Dropscone who came to catch me up on his news as events have meant that we have missed our morning cycle rides for quite a few days recently.

I went down to the waterside when I had locked up.

The heron was camera shy today…


…but a wagtail posed for me on a picnic table…..


…and a mallard made a splash.

mallard landing

I have been saying for some time, usually accompanied by a heavy sigh, that I really must get round to trimming the hedge along the road and I am happy to say that Mrs Tootlepedal had finally and probably correctly decided that I was never going actually to do it and so she had done it herself while I had been out.

trimmed hedge

And made a very nice job of it too.  She polished off a box ball while she was about it.

box ball

I wasn’t entirely idle and mowed the front lawn and took several more pictures (which is very hard work).


The Hydrangea against the house wall which is playing host to a blackbird nest has come out and it was buzzing with bees and other assorted insects this afternoon.


The coral peony is very nearly fully out.
A Weigela by the newly trimmed hedge is flowering too
The garden is filling up with more roses every day

Mrs Simplkins Feathered Pink

I have discovers that the full title of yesterday’s flower of the day is Mrs Simpkins Feathered Pink.  It certainly is an elaborate flower well worthy of an elaborate name.  I think today’s picture does it justice.

A mysterious parcel for me had been delivered to a neighbour while we were out.  It turned out to be a kind gift from our elder son for Father’s Day.  He knows what I like.

Gift from Anthony
He is a most thoughtful fellow.

While I was unpacking the parcel, I glanced out of the window and saw a great tit nibbling on a piece of peanut.

great tit

In the evening, we were joined by Maisie’s grandparents, Mike and Alison and Alison and I played some enjoyable music.  All the singing that I have done recently has certainly improved my breathing and this in turn has improved my flute playing.  There was plenty of scope for improvement in my playing  of course and there still is but I am finding it much more enjoyable to play whole sonatas when I don’t find myself struggling for breath half way through a movement and falling off my chair.  (That last phrase is more metaphorical than real.)

As well as the great tit, I even saw a flying sparrow of the day today.

flying sparrow



Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

24 thoughts on “Goings and comings

  1. The great tit posed well for you! Your lovely coral peony has inspired me to do a search, and there are several coral varieties that should survive here – but they are quite expensive. They seem to be between $35 – 40 CDN (19-21 UK pounds?) per root from the online nurseries – are they that expensive to buy at a nursery in your area? Yikes!

      1. Mrs Tootlepedal says that when she first saw it about ten years ago it was about £25 and so she refused to buy it but over the years it came to about £7 and she bought it then.

      2. Thanks for checking – I’ll have to be patient and hope the same thing happens here.

  2. Some great pictures, especially the peony and the one with the long name. Your Father’s day present was very apt. Congratulations to Mrs T on the hedge trimming.

  3. That bird in the hand must be some sort of youngster, based on the blue eyes? I confess to utter ignorance of European birds though, aside from the knowledge I am gleaning from your blog.

  4. I got a laugh out of the bird in the hand, who did not look the least bit impressed to be in hand! The wagtail is a very pretty and interesting looking bird! The coral peony is beautiful but that Feathered Pink is extra-impressive!

  5. That looks like a juvenile Rook you found. They are quite tame as we found one two years ago and it was just sitting on a tree branch and did not fly away.

    Your bird pictures are very good.

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