I got up and went

Gold Hill

Today’s guest picture was sent to me by Bruce, who is on holiday in the West Country.  It shows Gold Hill in Shaftesbury in Devon.  This street was the backdrop of a celebrated advertisement in the 1970s.

Gold HillIt was another still, dry morning and I managed to get out of bed and straight into my cycling gear.  Then, in the blink of an eye (or one and a half hours in real time), I was out on my bicycle.  It was pretty chilly again (6°C) and there was no sun to warm me up today but the light wind made it a very reasonable day for a pedal.

Unfortunately my legs must have been in mourning for the untimely defeat of the Scottish rugby team yesterday becuase they would only allow me to proceed at a funereal pace.  Still, twenty miles is twenty miles, however long they take and today’s ride took me over 3000 miles for the year.  I will be heavily reliant on some unseasonably fine weather though if I am to hit my A target of 4000 miles for the year.

When I got home, Mrs Tootlepedal and I sawed off the last big branch of the apple tree and now only a lonely stump is left.  Years ago, this tree was a perpetual target for juvenile apple thieves and on many a night, the garden would be alive with stealthy sounds and muffled whispers as the youth of the neighbourhood crept in to pick horribly unripe green apples which, if they ever actually ate them, would have given them well deserved stomach ache.

I put out some pellets for the starlings and didn’t have to wait long.

I think that the brown wing feathers show that my first visitor was a  youngster

Before I got a camera with a zoom lens, I never knew that birds were so nonchalant about standing on each other.

starlingsBut they were soon friends again.

starlingsThe starlings were  replaced by jackdaws.

jackdawAt the seed feeder, the arrival of a mature male sparrow put everyone else into a tizzy.

sparrowWhen the fuss died down, a greenfinch arrived for a snack.

greenfinchIn an effort to ease some of the aches and pains out of my grumbling legs, I had a bath after lunch and then went off to play music with Isabel.  Mike, our cellist was away in Edinburgh, so Isabel and I put in some work on a new sonata for keyboard with flute and cello accompaniment by Clementi which I recently bought from a fine on-line music shop in America.  We followed that with a very nice sonata for treble recorder and keyboard by Francesco Mancini.

I should add that there was a very light drizzle about lunchtime.  This came as an unwelcome surprise after our excellent dry spell and it put paid to the idea of a walk in the late afternoon with Mrs Tootlepedal.  The drizzle came and went but the day had got thoroughly grey and unappetising.  I did  manage a quick walk round the garden…

poppy parade
Today’s poppy parade

…but there wasn’t anything very exciting.  I thought that the marigolds should get a little credit though for their addition of some garden colour.

marigoldsThe starlings were queuing up in the hope of more pellets…..

starlings..but they flew off in a rush before I could put some out.

My flute pupil Luke had other things to do today so I spent a quiet evening cooking a feta, tomato, pepper and potato bake for my tea and some time watching the television with Mrs Tootlepedal.

The forecast says that tomorrow will be the last calm day before our kindly high pressure system slips away and allows some wind and rain to make an appearance so I hope that I can manage to make good use of it.

The flying bird of the day is a chaffinch.

flying chaffinch

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

34 thoughts on “I got up and went

  1. Some great bird photos here – I especially like the starlings. We had a dry afternoon today and have hopes for a whole dry day tomorrow. Not looking forward to more wet and windy weather on Wednesday. Congratulations on the 3000 miles – all done with a new knee! I hope you can get some more good cycling days before the end of the year.

  2. Good job with that bicycling! I haven’t been on mine for so long, it would surely be called the slowest bike in the USA. Please relay to Bruce that his picture is lovely!

  3. Congratulations on 3,000 miles so far this year! You do manage to capture birds standing on another one quite often, and it’s always good for a laugh. I’m sad that the flowers in the garden are about done for the year, but I’m sure that the garden will look even better next year.

  4. Very picturesque view from Shaftesbury.
    Glad you managed a pedal in spite of grumbling legs. Congratulations on your 3,000 miles.

  5. Sorry about grumbling legs but well done for crossing the 3000 mile mark, a triumph after your knee operation. The bake sounded delicious, just my sort of food.

  6. I’m very impressed by the 3000miles, especially considering your knee operation and recovery time. Lovely poppies. I must try and grow some here. I always get hungry reading your posts…if it’s not the treacle scones is the lovely hot meals you cook. 🙂

  7. I do enjoy your narrations of the birds-at-the-feeder shots! Gold Hill looks like it would be a treacherous proposition in wet or snowy weather.

  8. I too am a fan of your Starlings and the Jackdaw. And your 3000 milestone. And your days are still longer…ours are dwindling into darkness ever faster.

    1. We are on the wrong side of 12 hours light and 12 hours dark by a month and our clocks go back next week which is always a blow. The plan is to get up earlier but I’ll believe that when it happens.

      1. Oh I’m sorry you don’t sleep well. I can fall asleep almost anywhere which is likely why I don’t get a lot done. 🙂

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