Long day, short post

Today’s guest picture comes from my sister Mary’s friend and blog reader Venetia..  She visited the newly opened Steart Marshes, near Bridgwater in Somerset. She tells me that this very sensible scheme is allowing the sea to take over land to create saltmarshes and wetlands, to relieve pressure elsewhere. It has been in the planning for three years, so is nothing to do with the flooding in the region last winter.

Steart MarshesWe had a break in the wet weather here today which let me get out for a short 20 mile trip on the bicycle.  A side effect of the clearer weather was a nippy 3°C on the thermometer at breakfast so I spent a little time watching the birds before setting off.   The vast bulk of our visitors are goldfinches and chaffinches at the moment so it was a pleasure to welcome a sparrow and a blue tit to the feeder.

sparrow and blue titThough the goldfinches were soon back in control of the perches….

goldfinches…and the chaffinches were out in force.

chaffinchesAs soon as the temperature crept up to 4.5°C , I put on many layers and went for a gentle loosener up the Wauchope road.  I didn’t want to overtax my back, knee or breathing as we had a concert in the evening so I had plenty of time to look around as I went.

The trip started at the warm colours of the larches at Pool Corner….

larches…and I turned at the bottom of Callister where the view is beginning to look quite wintery.  Everything is turning brown,except the spruce trees, and in a month or two, the hills will be greyer and gloomier as we wait for spring to return.

CallisterIn between, I saw a good collection of roadside fungi….


These two were only a foot or two apart and I liked the contrast between the neat and small white and the large, sprawling browns.

For the record, I took a shot of Wauchope Schoolhouse with the wood behind it gradually being turned into a huge pile of logs.

Wauchope SchoolhouseI managed to resist the temptation to speed up and got home after a double trip to Callister and back in very good order.

I had time for a shower and a bit of shopping before we picked up choir member Jeremy and set off for the Sands Centre in Carlisle for our concert.  Mrs Tootlepedal came down, even though she wasn’t in a fit state to sing with choir.  It was a long afternoon and evening as we arrived at 3.30 and didn’t get out of the theatre until 10.30.

Meanwhile, we had had a sound check, a rehearsal of our massed choir pieces, a rehearsal of our own four pieces and a three hour concert in which we sang  our own four songs and the three with the massed choirs……

….and there was a lot of sitting and standing about in between times.

I got Mrs Tootlepedal to record some of our rehearsal on my mobile phone and she managed it very well.  Unfortunately being an instinctive singer, she sang quietly along to the choir as she recorded it so the recordings have a ghostly echoing quality to them.  I am going to see what I can do but meanwhile, here is a still showing the huge stage that we were on.

choir at carlisleIt was a patriotic affair with a very good military band, first world war songs and a minute’s silence on the programme.  We sang our songs pretty well for us and were tired but satisfied when the final curtain came across.  It is after one o’clock in the morning as I write this so it is time for bed.  Goodnight.

Today’s flying bird is a chaffinch showing determination to get to the feeder before the goldfinches.


Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

25 thoughts on “Long day, short post

  1. Clever shot of the chaffinch and a lovely collection of fungi and your birdfeeder visitors. We had 43C yesterday and another scorcher today so I am enjoying reading the cool Northern Hemisphere blogs! 🙂

    1. Ah, the tears behind the greasepaint! With seventy people in our choir alone, there was a lot of organising to be done just to get us on and off the stage.

  2. Goodness me, what a long tiring day. I hope you enjoyed being in such a large group of singers. What was the standard of the other choirs like, as good as yours?

  3. I was exhausted even before you finished listing the items in your day with the choir! I hope you take the chance to sleep a bit later today – you both deserve it. Mrs. T. was a trooper to attend when not feeling well.

  4. That sounds like a very long and tiring time in Carlisle, especially for Mrs T not feeling at her best. However, I am glad that your songs went well and trust that it was all worth the effort.

  5. Today’s bird pictures just beautiful (as always). I love the one with the four Goldfinches.
    Your concert stage looks so impressive with the flags and the splashes of red in the military band area. Hope your knee isn’t too bad after all that standing. Get well soon Mrs Tootlepedal.

  6. It sounds like a great day despite the sitting around and Mrs T not being up to performing. Love that she couldn’t help herself singing along! The whole set up looks very smart and I’m looking forward to hearing the recording – with or without the ghostly echo 🙂

  7. Reminds me of the time I made a little movie walking around the garden…and caught my own intense concentrated LOUD breathing as I tried to hold the camera steady! Makes me smile that she sang along.

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