Into every life a little rain must fall


Today’s guest picture is another from my brother’s visit to Flamborough Head.  As well as seeing gannets and a puffin, he witnessed a dramatic sea rescue of a woman who had got into difficulties in the sea.  It needed a brave onlooker who plunged into the sea, a life boat and a helicopter.  Here the helicopter is lowering medical assistance  to the shore.


Mrs Tootlepedal was very excited when she looked out of an upstairs window after breakfast and saw that the first of her Shirley poppies,  grown from seed, had shown its colour.

Shirley poppy

I was excited too as I like them a lot.

Talking of plants grown from seed, Mrs Tootlepedal is also very pleased with the good show that her Sweet Williams are making along both sides of the drive.

Sweet William

It would be a very gloomy person who wasn’t cheered up by these bright flowers.

In the morning, I had to visit the Archive Centre to replace a bulb in one of the microfiche readers.  Luckily you can buy the bulbs in town so it was not a great problem.  I had a bit of other shopping to do and I got back home in time to watch Scotland play Japan at rugby for the second time in two weeks.  Like the first match, Scotland managed to win but once again it was a far from convincing performance.  Still, it can’t be bad if you can win matches when you are not playing your best.

By the time that the game had finished so had the dry weather and a light rain was falling.  It got heavier which put paid to any plans for a walk or cycle.  It did ease off though and both the sun and I came out into the garden.

philadelphus, peony and water lily

peony and marigold

Everything was rather wet but still looking good.

We had a  bit of a worry a few days ago when one branch of our gooseberry bush got terminally sick and had to be cut off but the rest of the bush seems to be doing very well and the fruit is developing nicely.


The rain came back again and I went inside.  It didn’t dampen the spirits of the sparrows who continued to trample happily on each other in the pursuit of seed.

sparrow trampling

A blackbird took advantage of a rain filled coconut shell to have a drink.


The rain eased off again just in time to welcome a visit from Bob to the garden.


Bob had brought Mike Tinker and his daughter Liz with him.  She is a professional gardener and her visits are always welcome as she is very generous and helpful with her advice.  She had given Mrs Tootlepedal two Cardooms last year and there was a ceremonial inspection of the plants today.

They are doing well.

They are members of the artichoke family and should soon have big flowers.

Mike and Liz went on their way but not before Mrs Tootlepedal had pressed a dahlia on Liz.

When they had gone, I noticed a bee heading for a foxglove.

bee and foxglove

In spite of the some ominous looking dark clouds, the rain seemed to have gone away for a while so I decided on a short walk while the going was good.

The view of the church from Caroline Street is much improved since a tree on the river bank had to be felled.  You can see the stump in front of the wall.

Langholm Parish Church
This is where Mrs Tootlepedal sings in the choir on Sundays.

I passed the family of oyster catchers between the bridges on the Esk.

oyster catchers

Both the adults tried to lead me away from the youngster.

I walked along the Kilngreen taking in the sights both welcome…

A mallard making waves….well ripples.

…and less welcome.

Giant hogweed
This looks like giant hogweed on the Castleholm bank, a real pest among weeds

My walk took me towards the cricket ground and I noticed that there was a match on in spite of the rain earlier.

Cricket notice
I see that the most important spectator attraction is in the biggest writing

I kept away from the bar but stood on the boundary watching the game for several overs.

Langholm Cricket Ground

For those unfamiliar with the game of  cricket, there are bowlers who hurl balls at…




…who fend the balls off with a bat.

They are surrounded by fielders who collect the balls that the batsmen hit and catch them out if they are in the air.  On the occasion though, the fielders failed to keep hold of two very easy catches and the batsmen biffed and bashed and won the game.

I walked home when the game ended.

As I am still a bit tired after missing a whole night’s sleep, I was very happy that it had just been a short walk and to make things even better, Mrs Tootlepedal made the tea.

We followed the main dish up with a plate of strawberries and cream.  It seems bad that we have to eat strawberries and cream every day just now as the strawberry plants are very productive but someone has to do it.

The flower of the day is a Goldfinch Rose.  It is yellow when it comes out at first but soon changes to white as it develops.

Goldfinch rose

The flying bird of the day is two siskins.

flying siskins



Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

20 thoughts on “Into every life a little rain must fall

  1. I feel sorry for you, having to eat strawberries and cream so often, but life isn’t always peaches and cream.

    The view of the church is better without the tree, and that’s a stunning shot by any measure, you had great lighting and it’s extremely sharp!

    I not sure if I understand the game of cricket, other than it’s similar to baseball in some ways. I suppose that sports are sports, and if you like one, you’ll like the rest.

    1. I could stand the occasional peaches and cream but the weather won’t allow it here (unless you have a large glasshouse). Supporters of cricket like to talk up its depth and mysteries but it’s a pretty straightforward game at heart.

  2. Please share this story with your wife. As a child my father cultivated one very prolific gooseberry shrub. I was delighted to find one at a nursery 3 years ago. Not knowing where to plant it, it remained in the compost pile the first year. I finally planted it near the vegetable garden last year and it struggled. This year it was so happy! Many berries just like yours. But alas, one day I was sitting on my porch looking over the garden and a chipmunk ran off with a berry! He or she took ever berry until she was straining to reach berries on higher branches. I did get to eat maybe a dozen berries. Oh and my blueberries went to my Catbirds!

  3. Not only did Mrs. T. grow the flowers from seed, she also saw that they were comparable in both height and color. Even the cosmos is restrained and it fits into a beautiful display.
    I’d love to have Bob the dog visit and maybe even stay for a while.
    I hope that isn’t giant hogweed. It’s a real danger, to children especially.
    The church is very easy on the eyes. I’d rather have stone than brick.

    1. I agree with you on the question of stone vs brick churches. Brick churches always look as though they are regarding the world with disapproval (which they may well be of course).

      I am very happy to have dogs visit but although we were contented dog owners for many years, I regard a dog free house as a blessing these days.

  4. Replacing a bulb can be a complicated process, sometimes requiring the assistance of one or more individuals. It’s a brave man that attempts this very important job all on his own.

    I aim to have at least five spare bulbs available within arms reach before attempting bulb replacement. The quality of the average replacement bulb these days is atrocious.

      1. Mrs T does all the domestic work, leaving you free to replace light bulbs? I’m not sure which of you had the better deal. Have I got hold of the wrong end of the stick here?

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