Today’s guest picture comes from my Newcastle correspondent Fiona. She took the family to the seaside at Cullercoats on the east coast. Sharp eyed readers will notice some sea bathers who can be counted as pretty hardy folk.
I would have gone cycling after I had put a lamb stew in the slow cooker but I had an important appointment instead. Mike Tinker’s son-in-law, Lorne had promised to come and spike my lawn and he made good on his promise today. He is a fit young fellow and with my
knew nee new knee letting me spike the odd hole or two myself, the job was finished in an hour. The task of sweeping some sand into the holes was undertaken by William and Sara, Lorne’s children who arrived at an opportune moment.
The result may not look spectacular….
Once Lorne and the children had left, Mrs Tootlepedal, who had come back from singing in the church choir, got busy gardening and I wandered about with a camera in hand.
The poppies had perked up…
The nasturtiums have been adding a lot of colour to the garden lately.
And a lot of different colours from one plant.
I was a bit unsure as to how my legs would respond to the spiking efforts but it was too good a day not to have at least a short pedal so, leaving Mrs Tootlepedal to her delving, I went off on the slow bike.
I went along cautiously enough to have time to check out the verges. There were some expected things and other surprises.
The fireweed or rosebay willowherb is over but these bare stems were so colourful that I thought they were late flowers at first.
I only went as far as Westwater at four and a half miles before turning for home. I stopped and looked over the new bridge there and marvelled at how quickly the banks of the streams have recovered from being completely stripped during the renovations.
This is the scene today….
I stopped on the way back to see how good the new phone would be at capturing my favourite lichens on a concrete fence post beside the road.
Once home, there was time for lunch and a sit down before we went off to try a newly opened discount supermarket just a few hundred yards from the church where our Carlisle choir meets. This happy circumstance helped us to metaphorically hit two targets with one arrow as first we shopped and then we sang.
Our conductor and accompanist were delayed by the vagaries of our railway system so I got the chance, with the assistance of another choir member on piano, to practise my warm up and conducting skills while we waited for their arrival. To say that our conductor was ragingly angry when he finally arrived would be a bit of an understatement but our excellent singing and close attention to his instructions soon restored his good humour. I just hope that their train home was on time.
The slow cooked stew turned out well and later in the evening, we went out to a concert by our local amateur orchestra at the Buccleuch Centre.
Warning: This part of the post may contain references to sax and violins
There was a good turnout of musicians, including about a dozen string players, two saxophonists, one each of clarinet, flute, oboe and bassoon as well as two horns, two trumpets and two trombones so when they were all playing, the orchestra made a rich sound.They were playing a selection of pieces by composers of musicals and after a shaky start, they hit their stride well and a local girl, Zoe, obliged with some excellent vocal solos to add variety to the evening. The concert featured some very jolly and competently played solos from members of the brass section and the whole thing was good fun.
We are promised a lunar eclipse and a big red moon tonight but as it requires me to be up and out of the house at three in the morning if I want to see it, I took a shot of the moon when I came back from the concert just in case I don’t make it.
The sun is getting low in the sky at this time of the year and if it is out in the morning, it casts a big shadow on the bird feeder with the result that taking satisfactory pictures of flying birds in the shade is nearly impossible….
…so it is lucky that I have a flying insect of the day in the sunshine instead.