Life in the slow lane

Today’s guest picture comes from Venetia who is very proud of her pond’s first crop of tadpoles.  She sent me a video of them wriggling  but I thought it would be too exciting for the readers.

tadpolesAfter yesterday’s busy day, I took things quietly today.  I was helped by a very windy day which discouraged any thought of cycling and I managed a morning without doing anything more strenuous than drinking coffee with Sandy and Dropscone and putting a week of the newspaper index into the Archive Group database.

It was very gloomy and drizzly at breakfast time so I cheered myself up by snapping some pretty flowers which my daughter Annie had sent Mrs Tootlepedal for Mothering Sunday.  They have lasted very well.

mother's day flowers

Mrs Tootlepedal tells me that the yellow flower is a fancy buttercup.

I did look out of the window from time to time.

blackbird and dove
A blackbird and a dove were lurking among the flowers.

We had quite a bit of rain overnight and this had encouraged a quite a few birds to visit the feeder.  Some were the usual suspects.

robinAmong the visitors once the sun came out was one goldfinch which defied the windy conditions and took the topmost perch in the plum tree.

goldfinchIt couldn’t hang on for long and soon sought a more stable base…

goldfinch…before popping onto the feeder….

goldfinch…and snarling at any other bird which came in range.

goldfinch and chaffinchI did get out as far as the pond….

frogsMrs Tootlepedal had driven off to Lockerbie to catch the train to Edinburgh to visit Matilda.  When she got there, she found that a broken down goods train had closed the line for an indefinite time so she decided reluctantly to come home again.  As she managed to fit in a useful visit to a retail outlet on her way, she was less disappointed than she might have been.

She is working hard with a home made poultice to draw the ingrained soot residues out of our sandstone fireplace lintel. After lunch,  I left her to this and went for a well sheltered walk round the Pheasant Hatchery and the Kilngreen.   This modest two mile sunny but windy walk took me nearly two hours and it wasn’t because I was stopping to take a lot of pictures on the way.

I had my cameras with me but nothing much caught my eye which I hadn’t taken before.  A recent post by the New Hampshire Gardener made me keep a look out for lichen on trees  as well as my usual walls.

tree lichenThere trees themselves were a treat to look at, both singly in the middle of a field…

pine…and in groups along my path.

treesI saw a quick movement by the fence that you can see beside the path and peering into a bush, I saw a thrush.

thrushWhen I got to the Kilngreen, I was hoping to nod to Mr Grumpy but he was elsewhere.  A pair of ducks flew off and disappeared into the blue before I could get a good shot of them flying….

flying ducks…but too my surprise, they circled round and swooped low across the car park before landing back in the river.  I just caught one of them.

duck in car parkI was strangely tired by the time that I got home and a plan to go up to the moor and watch owls died a silent death in the face of some concentrated inertia.

In the evening, I went up to the Archive Centre with Sandy and was pleasantly surprised to find that our internet connection was working very well.  In fact it was working so well that Sandy and I put two weeks of the newspaper index into the database in double quick time.  It helped that they were fairly light weeks as far as items of news were concerned.

The flying bird of the day is one of the goldfinches.

goldfinch

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

28 thoughts on “Life in the slow lane

  1. What a shame about the (non)visit to Matilda. I’m getting Matilda-photo withdrawal symptoms.
    Does anyone know why half the tadpoles are brownish and the others maroonish please?

  2. I heard about the trouble on the trains while listening to the radio this morning and hoped that you and Mrs T weren’t involved. I loved the lichen photo and the thrush.

  3. It’s not fair, even your lichens are more photogenic than ours! 😉

    After cycling nearly 50 miles yesterday, it’s no wonder you were a bit tired today, it’s been a while since you’ve gone so far. Hopefully the weather will permit you to get out on the bike again tomorrow.

  4. That flying goldfinch is so graceful, what a good photograph. I agree with the previous commentator, no wonder you found the walk tiring after all that cycling the day before, restraint is not a word in your exercise vocabulary.

  5. Wriggling tadpoles would definitely get me overexcited – my frogs disappeared several years ago and I haven’t seen a taddie since, so I envy you your pop-eyed pond guests.

  6. Look at all those lovely tadpoles! I am rather envious. I always enjoy the interesting and often colourful lichens you see on your walks also. What pretty birds the goldfinches are. Their colours are displayed so well in your last flying pictures.

    1. They are very pretty. They are one of the great list of things that I never noticed until I bought a camera a few years ago. Ironically, I bought the camera to take better landscape shots and the birds were an unexpected bonus.

  7. What a shame Mrs T couldn’t get to Edinburgh to see Matilda. Still, a little retail therapy usually helps. I like the flying duck pictures, especially the silhouetted ones and the goldfinches.

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