Making preparations

Lindisfarne Castle

Today’s guest picture comes from my friend Gavin who is in the North East of England where he caught Lindisfarne Castle glowing in the evening sunshine.

Lindisfarne Castle

We had plenty of sunshine to glow in ourselves today as it was a really pleasant summer day, sunny without being too hot and with an occasional cloud to add variety.

It should have been a good day for a pedal and our neighbour Ken had a worthwhile 60 mile outing but I had things to do as we are going away tomorrow for a week.

NB:  While I am away there will be no posts and this will be the first time in six years that I haven’t made an effort to post something every day.  The fact is that my right hand has got quite painful with arthritis in my thumb joint and so I am going to take the opportunity of the trip south to give my hand  a complete rest from photography, mouse and key board work and cycling in the hope that a short break will let it calm down.    I hope to resume hostilities next Monday.

It may be stating the obvious but it would be helpful if no one added any comments to toady’s post as I don’t like to have unanswered comments on a post and I will not be in a position to answer any.  I will take as read your inconsolable grief at not having to look at any more poppy pictures for a while.   As I won’t be reading anyone else’s posts, I would ask that authors of those that I read regularly shouldn’t do anything very exciting this week that I would be sorry to miss.

Meanwhile, I was busy hurting my hand in several ways today.

I took a lot of photographs in the garden.  The dahlias are having fun.


The garden was full of insects.

beees and hoverflies

Nearly every flower seemed to have one of one sort or another…

yarrow and privet

….and some had two….

poppies with insects

…or even three.

Apart from a break to entertain Dropscone to a cup of coffee or two, we were out in the garden a lot making sure that things were as neat and tidy as possible.  There was a lot of dead heading and some uprooting and I mowed the middle lawn with the cutters a bit lower than usual.

I stopped to admire a colourful corner and get my breath back.

Colourful corner

The purple clematis on the fence is causing me to worry a bit.  The flowers seem to have four, five or even six petals and I wondered if there were different plants growing side by side…


…but Mrs Tootlepedal says that she thinks it is all the same one.

While I was looking at flowers, a dunnock scurried by and dashed under a bush.  They are very shy birds but we have at least one family in the garden.


We also got our thoughts regarding packing in order and Mrs Tootlepedal checked my intended attire for Granny’s birthday party to ensure that it complied with regulations.

There was a glimpse of tortoiseshell butterflies but they were too quick for me to get a good shot.  Even the white butterflies were not in co-operative mood today.


After lunch, with the garden under control and packing well in hand, we went for a drive to the Tarras Valley to make good use of the fine weather.  We drove as far up the valley as we could and when we reached Lodgegill, we got out for a short walk.  Two valleys meet at Lodgegill.

Byrecleuch Burn
The Byrecleuch Burn valley
Tarras Water valley
Tarras water valley

We chose to walk up the Tarras Water.  It is sheep country as you can see from the complete lack of trees or bushes.  On a sunny day in summer, it is a beautiful place for a walk, peaceful and calming.

There were things to look at as we went along and back again.

Lodgegill Sheds

Lodgegill gate

Lodgegill bridge
We went as far as this bridge

Tarras water

There were quite a few electric fences to be seen but there were some fine examples of dry stone dykes as well…

Dry stone dyke

…and this one had a fine lichen on it.

dry stone dyke lichen

Because of the sheep, there were no meadows of wild flowers but there were some to be seen…

wild flowers at Lodgegill
That was the only orchid we saw

Even the sheep leave the thistles alone.

thistle at Lodgegill

I stopped as we drove back down the road to capture a bridge with an accompanying ford.  We took the bridge.

Bridge at Cooms

It was a very satisfactory short walk but not one that I could do justice to with my camera.  The camera can’t look round and take in the whole scene as a walker can.

After a refreshing cup of tea and a slice of bread and lemon curd, a gift from our Friday visitors, I went out into the garden again and mowed the front lawn.  In a rather mean way, I am hoping that the weather stays nice and cool in Langholm while we are away so that there is not too much growth to cope with when we get back.  Pushing a push mower through long grass is hard work.

In the evening, my flute pupil Luke came and he played a piece that he been practising with very good results.  We then set about a Telemann sonata for two flutes in canon which is going to need some hard work.    When the dark nights come, practice will be a more agreeable way to spend time than it is on lovely summer days.  We are never going to be maestros.

No flower of the day, no flying bird of the day, just a subdued farewell to blogging for a week.



Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

7 thoughts on “Making preparations

  1. Oh thank god I found you, I have been away myself for so long I thought for a moment I’d lost you. This is as always a beautiful and inspiring post and I look forward to trying to catch up with you more.
    Wonderful to see butterflies and bees. We seem to be in short supply of both in these parts.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: