Getting value from a damp day

Hannah, Elinor and Leo

Today’s guest picture comes from my Newcastle correspondent who has deserted our cool damp weather for the blazing sun in California while she visits her brother who lives there.  She sent me this picture of her children suffering from the heat there and being comforted by their cousin.

Hannah, Elinor and LeoWe had another day of continuous rain here, the only variety being in the amount coming out of the sky at any one time.

I had an appointment in Carlisle to get  two watercolour paintings which have been entrusted to the Archive Group valued and Mrs Tootlepedal came with me to make sure that I didn’t run off if they turned out to be worth millions.

The valuer was a very charming man who was pleased to see the paintings which are by W H Nutter, a  Victorian artist, well know and admired in Cumbria.  He said that he had never seen paintings of Langholm by this artist before and added that this would oddly make them less valuable as it is the Cumbrian pictures that are most sought after.   You can tell by the fact that I am still here, that they were valued at less than millions (or indeed thousands) but they are valuable enough to make sure that we look after them well.  I have had them framed and the next thing will be to see if some restoration can be done at a reasonable price.

nutter distilleryWe made good use of the trip to Carlisle by adding a little necessary shopping to the morning. Because I have been asked to provide two copies of one of my local photographic views to a friend, frames and mounts were on the list and we added some French, Italian and English cheese to these so the morning was well spent.

I had a walk round the garden when we got back, as it was one of the moments when the rain was quite light.  Mrs Tootlepedal recently bought and planted a buddleia for me which I hope will attract butterflies.  It is growing well but has only got as far as attracting bees at the moment.

buddleiaThe poppies are suffering badly in the wet…

poppies…but nasturtiums and hostas are not such wimps.

hosta nasturtiumAt the bird feeder, queues were forming.

bird feederAbout three o’clock, another lull in the rain gave me a bit of hope and, clutching an umbrella to protect my cameras, I went on a short walk up the Wauchope road to see an unusual thistle.  I had passed it while cycling and I had taken Mrs Tootlepedal to visit it in the car when we came back from Carlisle because she hadn’t quite believed what I had actually seen it but when she saw it herself, she was convinced.

It was a white thistle.

white thistleThere were quite a few of them about among a field of more conventionally coloured thistles.

thistlesThey are definitely white flowers and not just washed out old pink ones because you can see white buds waiting to come out.  We have never seen these before.

I was distracted by lichens on walls and fence posts as I walked.

lichensWhile I was up the road, I walked a few hundred yards further and took a look at my favourite cascade…..

Wauchope cascade…and found a bit more water going over the rocks than on my last visit.

I turned for home and took the path along Gaskell’s Walk as a change from the road.  Considering that it looked like this four years ago…..gaskells…it has recovered well…

Gaskells walk…and the bank is covered in growth.  Rosebay Willow Herb is in fashion at the moment.

There were fungi to be seen…

fungi…both small and big and plenty of wild flowers too.

wild flowersI came back down through the park and stopped to look at the fruit on a cypress tree beside the war memorial.

cypress treeIn spite of the rain, there was colour both at the back of the house when I got back….

Crocosmia hanging over the dam.

…and in the garden.

Rambler roses
Rambler roses hanging over the fence

During my walk, I was conscious of agents keeping an eye on my movements.

A cow at Wauchope Castle checks me out
cow in thistle
Another keeps a low profile among the thistles
Sheep on Stubholm
Sheep on Stubholm give me a hard stare. The one on the left apparently has no eyes and the other apparently has four.

The rain got heavier after I returned home and that was the end of that.

In the evening, our neighbour Margaret took us to a pre Common Riding evening at the Masonic Lodge where the chief speaker was her grandson.  He did an excellent job and as he was joined by a competent and varied lot of local singers as well as other good speakers, we had an enjoyable evening.  It had the added advantage of not going on too long which was very welcome.

I don’t want to get too excited but the forecasters say we might get a glimpse of the sun tomorrow.

The flying bird of the day is a chaffinch.

flying chaffinch

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

32 thoughts on “Getting value from a damp day

      1. No worries if you can’t. I just find the restoration of documents and painting to be fascinating. We are currently doing a restoration project now, but it’s not artwork. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and photos 🙂

  1. If those paintings were appraised at one dollar each I’d still be happy to have them on my walls,
    I’ve never seen a white thistle either. It’s an unusual find, I would think.
    The colors in the shot of the cascade are beautiful!

  2. The white thistles are unusual, a great find. Rainy days can make photography challenging, but I loved the color saturation in your photos, and the cascades are stunning!

  3. The local “agents” are keeping you under very close surveillance – has that got to do with the painting entrusted to your care or your discovery of a new thistle species? The volume of water cascading and the depth of greenery is a very pretty silver lining…

  4. Loved the cascade, all those beautiful flowers and the painting. Well done for hoping to get some restoration work done on it, a wonderful addition to the town’s archives.

  5. Well done for getting out in that wet weather yesterday and to return with a great collection of photos. It is amazing how those forest paths rejuvenate after tree felling, just shows how much we need light to thrive. Your cascade captures the light admirably.

  6. Usually there are lots of butterflies on my buddleia, but very few this year. Not good for the currently running Big Butterfly Count. I suppose it’s a consequence of the awful weather we all seem to be having, but hopefully they’ll recover next year.
    I hope the pretty white thistle is not the result of an unhealthy mutation.

  7. Enjoyed the cows and sheep lurking about. Hope your restoration enquiries for the picture are successful.

  8. I love your watchers, especially the cow in the thistle! I’ve seen thistle with white leaves before, but never with white flowers; very interesting. And you find some amazing lichens, always a treat (as are the conventional pretty flowers).

  9. I like the way you framed the crocosmia – lovely. As long as it behaves itself, it must be a treat to have the dam behind your house. Also enjoyed the shots of the cattle (more amusing than our television, I find!) – Mary’s description of them “lurking about” is wonderful!

  10. After 2 weeks of high temperatures at the beginning of the month we are back in the doldrums again. We also don’t have many butterflies or dragonflies here either. I liked the cascade and the watchful sheep and cattle pictures very much.

  11. I quite like that painting of Langholm.

    I’m wondering, is the buddleia a type of butterfly bush? We planted something very similar looking in our landscaping this year, only we thought we got butterfly “bush” and it appears we got butterfly “weed” which has grown quite tall and spindly and the flowers end up bent over near the ground.

    Loved the cascade and the cow hiding amongst the thistle and the sheep. I do hope the predictions of sun come true!

    1. After posting my comment I decided to look it up and what we planted is indeed the same thing – buddleia. I think perhaps ours has grown so tall and spindly because it isn’t in full sun. Obviously we are not master gardeners. LOL

      1. Yes, they are rather. We are trying to decide if we want to keep them around for next year or not. But today I got a few good photos of a tiger swallowtail butterfly on them, so perhaps I shall. I do wish I had someone with Mrs. T’s expertise on hand to give me advice as to how to get our landscaping filled out like yours is. I know it takes a few years. I will have to get some books from the library.

      2. The butterflies are the only reason to have a Buddleia, I agree. It takes a lot of work to get full beds. Mrs Tootlepedal grows quite a lot of annuals from seed in the greenhouse and plants them out as the year goes on. We are helped by the ever ready rain of course which makes things grow.

  12. A white thistle? I’ve never seen one here. How unusual. That’s an impressive cascade. I would visit that one regularly. We are quite deprived of such things in my area but we have abundant sunshine of course. 🙂 Thank you for including more fungi and lichen shots. I never get sick of these unusual life forms.They are fascinating to me and I can imagine spending a great deal of any visits overseas, looking out for them. Your humour had me smiling as always, Tom, and cheered me up on an unwell day.

  13. I’ve never seen a white thistle before either. I hope your buddliea attracts some butterflies, there don’t seem to be many about here this year.

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