Just a little bit further

Today’s guest picture, sent to me by her mother, shows Matilda settling down at home after having sampled all the excitements of Langholm Common Riding.


We had another lovely sunny day today and with a drop in the temperature from roasting to merely hot, it was just about perfect.   We were up quite early and Mrs Tootlepedal, who had taken a handy trowel with her, made the most of the good weather by combining a short cycle ride with the collection of as much manure from her manure mine as she could fit in her back carrier  (inside a plastic bag).

Meanwhile I got through a little of the backlog of the newspaper archiving and put a week and a half of the index  into the database.

While I was waiting for Mrs Tootlepedal to get home, I took a couple of pictures in the garden.

Each day brings a new show of Shirley poppies…

shirley poppies

…and a  new opium poppy has appeared with a very rich colour.


I was looking to see how the yellow crocosmia are coming on when I noticed this little bug eyed monster.


And I was lucky to get this final shot of the ligularia in the front bed….


…because by the end of the day, Attila the gardener had been round with her secateurs and disappeared the whole lot.

The sparrows provided me with excellent entertainment while Iwas waiting for coffee time and Dropscone…


…as there are several new families about and the feeder was always busy.


Dropscone had gone round the morning run by himself at a good speed and he must have got up early too as he had changed and cooked some scones before he arrived for coffee and we enjoyed the scones still hot from the cooker.

After Dropscone had left, we were visited by Mike Tinker who brought two of his grandchildren round on a frog hunt.  William and Sara were delighted to find that a frog or two were still to be found by diligent searching in our little pond.

Mike was telling us that their mother, his daughter Liz, had been alert enough to have plunged into the river on Common Riding morning to rescue a little boy who had drifted out of his depth and was disappearing under the water while everyone else was watching the Cornet and the other riders crossing the river a hundred yards away.  It was lucky for the boy that Liz had been sitting with her own children on the stones on the opposite shore of the river and that his sister screamed loudly enough amid all the other noise to attract Liz’s attention.

Taking things very carefully, I mowed the front lawn which needed a clip badly and then retired for a tasty lunch of sardines on toast.

I had time in all this to look at some other flowers.


And vegetables.

Main crop potatoes. We are sharing our potatoes with quite a lot of slugs sad to say.

And flying visitors.

There are a lot of these white butterflies about

After lunch, I got the speedy bike out and went off for a very gentle fourteen mile ride.  I was greeted after three miles by an old friend.

This bull has stood and watched phlegmatically on many occasions as I have pedalled by

It was a perfect day for pedalling and my route gave me some splendid views…

Looking across the Solway to the English side

…and I was sorry that I couldn’t make better use of it.  Nevertheless, I was pleased to be sensible enough to take it easy and to discover when I got back that I hadn’t made anything worse.  A little further each day when the weather is suitable is my plan.

Mrs Tootlepedal had made the most of the good weather by getting stuck into some serious gardening for most of the day.  I caught her in a sunflower jungle which she has planted, looking up at the tallest sunflower in the group.  It is so tall that we may never know if it has actually flowered up there.

You can just make her out if you look carefully.

She is excited by a striking new lily which has appeared in the back border.


I am more excited than her by a new clematis nearby.  I like its complexity but she thinks that the colour is dull.


The ligularias may be almost over but this leaf is attractive in its own right.

ligularia leaf
The colour is probably caused by a mineral deficiency.

When I went in to cook the tea, the sparrows were still busy outside and I noticed this attentive parent doing its duty.


Unlike yesterday I was spoiled for flying birds today and among them were some busy blue tits….

blue tits

…but unsurprisingly it is a sparrow that has made it as official flying bird of the day.



Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

27 thoughts on “Just a little bit further

  1. You seem to be having a wonderful summer and it is fairly bringing the flowers along.
    Incidentally I once saved my brother from certain death in the dam when he was about three and I was a year his senior. His wellieshad filled with water and he had fallen over and couldn’t get up. To use Langholm parlance ” ah scraffed me heed off” and held his head above water until we were eventually rescued. How fortunate that Liz heard the distress call!

  2. You’ll have to leave the windows open for a bit. Oriental lilies like that one are usually quite fragrant and one or two flowers can smell up the whole yard.
    I’ve never seen a clematis like that one.
    That little boy has something to remember for the rest of his life. I hope he has learned not to get too close to rivers. I didn’t start walking in them until I was about 10 or 11.

  3. Wonderful Matilda, thank goodness for the rescue of the little boy thanks to Liz and his alert sister, lots of splendid flowers and a feast of birds both flying and perching.

  4. What a fortunatel rescue, thanks to Liz’s alertness and the sister’s ability to raise the alarm.
    Beautiful poppies. Glad you managed a ride without ill-effect.
    Lovely picture of Matilda.

  5. Oh how much I wish I could meet you and Attila/Alison in person. I am gradually getting back to blogging in the to-and-fro way, but catching up on past posts on yours and others’ blogs is impossible. Instead I am basking in the present and your blog has always been a joy and a comfort, Mr Tootlepedal. Wishing you both well and hopefully will get back to a blogging rhythm!

  6. So glad to hear of the continued improvement in your hip and that you’ve been able to enjoy a sensible pedal! Love the rich colors of the opium poppy and the lily.

  7. Three cheers to Liz for her rescue of the tyke!

    It’s good to hear that your hip is improving. The flowers were as beautiful as ever! You may need a ladder to check the sunflower blossoms.

  8. What luck that the child was spotted and saved! Small children and water are a dangerous combination. Your sunflowers are lovely and far taller than mind.

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