Two outings

Today’s guest picture, which was sent to me by yesterday’s visitor Dylan, shows his sister Tash’s pet dragon.  It may not look much now but just wait a couple of years and stand back when it learns to breath fire.


A sunny morning warmed our aged bones as Dropscone and I headed out to Gair on our usual morning run after breakfast.  The noticeable breeze which made the outward journey hard work, strengthened a little when we turned for home and we enjoyed  the spin back over the hill with a final headlong rush down the hill towards our coffee and scones.

Our timing was good as we got back before it started to rain quite heavily.  Well, at least my timing was good as I was indoors but Dropscone had to brave the rain as he pedalled home after coffee.

There wasn’t any time for taking photographs after the rain had stopped because Mrs Tootlepedal, Granny and I went out for a motor excursion to Lanercost Priory to have a light lunch.  We stopped at Longtown to buy some spare inner tubes as both Mrs Tootlepedal and I have had recent punctures.  I know that it is possible to mend punctures by the road side and I have done it but my experience is that you often have to mend them again shortly afterwards so these days, I prefer to cycle with a spare inner tube in my back pocket.

The sun was out as we drove south and it was a lovely day when we arrived at Lanercost.  After a meal in the café there, I left the ladies and took a quick stroll round the Priory, camera in hand.  Needless to say, the sun promptly went in.  There has been a lot of very well done restoration at Lanercost.

Lanercost Priory

Though the main entrance is lacking a little grandeur.
Half of the building is still used as a church…..
Lanercost Priory
…while the other half remains a ruin.
Lanercost Priory
I didn’t go inside but peeped through doors and windows instead.

The buildings around the priory and its farm have been treated very well and you can rent some of them out as holiday homes.

Lanercost Priory
It would be very peaceful here if it wasn’t  for the incessant clicking of visitors’ cameras.

I stopped taking pictures and came back to the visitor centre to meet Granny and Mrs Tootlepedal.  The sun came out again.

Lanercost Priory

We drove on a few miles to visit Hadrian’s Wall at the Banks Milecastle.  This famous wall was built by the Romans to stop the English escaping into Scotland after the Romans occupied the southern half of the British isles.

In many places most of the stone used to build the wall was taken for housing after the Romans left and there are only small sections left.  There were milecastles every mile along the wall and you can still the remains of one at Banks…

Hadrian's Wall

…as well as a short section of wall foundations.  Of course the sun went in as I got out of the car to take these pictures.

Hadrian's Wall

The view south from the milecastle is very good.

Hadrian's Wall

We took a few very quiet and narrow roads before rejoining the main road to Longtown and got back to Langholm in beautiful sunshine just in time to watch the end of the third stage of the Tour de France as it arrived in London (where it was raining).

After the stage ended, I watched a bird or two…

siskins behaving badly
Siskins behaving badly

…..put a new inner tube into Mrs Tootlepedal’s back tyre  and walked round the garden.

Martagon Lily
The Martagon Lilies are almost over
The Alstroemeria are in full flower
Icelandic Poppies
And these Icelandic Poppies continue to produce new blooms.
A green nicotiana
A self sown nicotiana has beaten Mrs Tootlepedal’s greenhouse grown plants into flower.

The sun was too bright now for photographing flowers so I mowed the middle lawn instead.

I had to leave the sunshine when my flute pupil Luke came for his lesson.  He has a good ear and was able to work out the correct fingering for the major scales of B flat, E flat and A without any help from me.   We had a good lesson.

After tea  of delicious slow cooked lamb stew, I went out into the garden to enjoy the late evening sunshine.

Ligularias in the sunshine…
Rosa Mundi
…and Rosa Mundi in the shade

After a last glance at the mowed lawn….

middle lawn
It has been a very good year for grass.

….I went inside to look through the pictures that I had taken during the day.

In the other room, Mrs Tootlepedal and Granny were watching a programme about University Challenge and Mrs Tootlepedal called me through when Edinburgh University was mentioned and for two whole seconds, my youthful features appeared on the screen from 50 years ago.  They keep that clip in the archives because one of our team members went on to become a cabinet minister so mine was only reflected glory.

Two more sparring siskins share the proud position of being flying bird of the day.

flying siskins




middle lawn



Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

22 thoughts on “Two outings

  1. I truly look forward to your posts everyday, even if I can’t think of anything new to say. I’m never sure of what I’ll see in your posts, other than some great photos, but you come up with new subjects regularly.

  2. The previous commentator had said it all, I can only echo his remarks. I loved your witty remark on Hadrian’s Wall and am only sorry I missed you on the clip from University Challenge.

  3. A lovely tour, a walk in your garden, and I am content. Thank’s Tom! Here we are gearing up for a summer thunderstorm. I can hear the wind whipping the trees into submission and the thunder in the background. Soon I think Iwill have to turn on a light or two!

  4. The lawn is spectacular, it puts mine to shame. Your drive yielded some lovely old buildings and I’d love to see Hadrians Wall, even if it didn’t do a very good job of keeping us English out 🙂

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