Today’s guest picture is another from our recent week as guests in the south. Sally and Richard took us to the gardens of this fine mansion, Heale House, which was built in the latter part of the sixteenth century.
My ideal plan for the day relied on an early leap out of bed into glorious sunshine and the subsequent late arrival of a weather front.
The wind was forecast to be fairly light so a cycle ride of a reasonable length was part of the scheme.
In the event, the early sunshine was there but it was not matched by the equivalent leap out of bed. The leap transmogrified into a late stagger and after a lengthy breakfast, I finally got on my bike at ten o’clock. It was still sunny when I set out but it soon clouded over and I shortened my intended route to thirty four miles and just made it home before the untimely arrival of the weather front started the rain off.
I didn’t have time to stop and stare but I paused for a banana at Gretna Green and admired a pair of fine horses while I munched.
They were the front end of a smart wedding conveyance….
…waiting for another bride and groom to roll off the Gretna Green marriage conveyor belt.
Nearby stands a strange work of art.
It acts as a photo frame for pictures of happy couples but it always looks to me like the hands of someone who has been buried prematurely and is begging to be released, perhaps not the most happy metaphor for a marriage.
There was just time for a quick scoot round the garden in some light drizzle when I got back before the rain set in for the rest of the day.
The gloomy weather had put the hoverflies off and the picturesque poppy only had a single small fly for company today.
Some bright red leaves on the Virginia Creeper seemed appropriate for such a gloomy and autumnal day.
But autumn brings fruit as well so all is not lost.
There are still plenty of flowers about…
…and new flowers are coming along. There are anemones and astilbes among the dahlias now.
I thought that I had found a very odd dahlia….
…until Mrs Tootlepedal pointed out that I was looking at it from the back.
Not everything in the garden is lovely. For some reason the Golden Syllabub rose, which has had plenty of buds, has never felt that it was the right time to open out and has looked like this all summer.
It wasn’t very warm and the clouds had made the day dark and cheerless so it was most fortunate that the authorities had arranged a very interesting programme of Olympic events for us to watch. We watched everything.
No flying birds today but there is a flower of the day. It is a dahlia (viewed from the front).