A tootle but no pedal

Matilda at Jupiter Artland

Today’s guest picture shows Matilda contemplating a possible friend whom she met at Jupiter Artland near Edinburgh.

Matilda at Jupiter Artland

It was raining again when we got up this morning but by the time that I set for the High Street to visit the Archive Centre and then go to take my turn offering information to visitors, the rain had stopped.

The tourist information has been relocated to a prime spot in the Market Place and is both more comfortable for the volunteers and more accessible and obvious to visitors so my two hours passed by pleasantly enough and I even gave useful information to several visitors.

I had intended when I got home to do some dead heading, have some lunch, mow a lawn or two and shoot off for a cycle ride but I was absolutely overcome by lassitude for no particular reason and only managed a little dead heading, a single lawn and no cycling at all.

I didn’t even take many pictures.  This was partly because I was tired and partly because the sun refused to come out until the evening and partly because there wasn’t anything new in the garden.  I did take one or two though.

The cosmos conitnue to show the benefits of the dead heading
poppy and insects
The drier weather had brought some insects back out

There was only one fleeting glimpse of a coloured butterfly although there were quite a lot of white ones about.

two spot white butterfly

I summoned up enough energy to sieve some compost and whatever else you can say about our weather this year, I have to admit that it has been very suitable for the compost which is maturing at a good speed.

Mike Tinker came round for a cup of tea and he told me that the possible salvia which appeared on the blog a few days ago….


…is definitely a lobelia siphilitica.   So that is one up to him and the New Hampshire Gardener.  The curious name is based on the fact that it was thought to be a cure for syphilis.  As it seems to be poisonous this might be a cure of the ‘kill or cure’ variety.

After he left, I took the slow bike out on a fruitless search for interesting birds by the river.  They were very scarce to the point of invisibility.

herring gull

A non flying herring gull stayed firmly rooted to its rock until I gave up and moved on.

I was reduced to taking a picture of a slug….


…which was feeding on a huge fungus at the roots of one of the beech trees which is going to be felled on the Lodge walks.

When I got home, I noticed that the nigella seems to be getting ever pinker.


I find that these flowers are called Love in a Mist and I can see why in a way but what the octopus is doing there, I can’t imagine.

Just as it was time for me to go in and get my tea, the sun came out and kissed its favourite flower.


After tea, I was too busy to take advantage of the good weather as I had arranged for Mike and Isabel to come round and provide a harpsichord and cello  accompaniment for Luke and me as we played our Loeillet trio sonata.  This was great fun and Luke played really well and we got through all four movements in fine style.

When Luke left, Mike and Isabel stayed on and we played a Quantz trio sonata, a couple of Handel recorder sonatas, had a guided tour round the garden and finished off with a bit of Mozart.

Although I was still very tired and didn’t play at my best, we enjoyed ourselves as usual.

I was sorry not to be able to find a flying bird today but the arrival of a second paper white poppy makes up for it. The sun came out just in time for me to catch it at its best.

white poppy

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

28 thoughts on “A tootle but no pedal

  1. Tiredness. I have the same. Perhaps two weeks of Rio-related late nights. The World Snooker Championships are another tiredness-inducing event. Think what we would be like if we weren’t retired.

  2. I had to laugh at the photo of Matilda and the statue (?) She looks a little flabbergasted.
    The mass of white cosmos is beautiful.
    I thought that those flowers had the lobelia look with their 5 lobes, but since you have many plants that I’ve never seen I couldn’t be positive. It’s a pretty flower that I’ve never heard of. Many if not all of our native lobelias are considered toxic, but they were and are used medicinally. I suppose it must be the size of the dose that cures or kills.
    That last white poppy is a beautiful thing.

    1. Being flabbergasted when confronted by modern art is a common reaction for me. The dosage is all important but in this case, it doesn’t seem to have any foundation for its suggestive curative powers.

  3. The poppy and the cosmos are very fine. I really like white flowers but they get battered so quickly in our windswept garden and then don’t look nice at all. I was also amused by Matilda and her ‘friend’.

  4. That’s quite the stare-down Matilda is having with the statue! Another gloriously white and fragile looking poppy – wonderful.

  5. I’ve found something that almost always causes birds to take flight, setting my camera down because I’ve gotten tired of holding it up and looking away. Works almost every time!

    It’s nice that the tourist information location has been changed for the better, maybe you won’t be as bored there during your stints, and more comfortable is always better. As gorgeous as your area is, I’d think that you’d have a steady stream of visitors.

    1. We think that we should have more visitors too but we are caught in a infinite loop of a lack of provision for tourist accommodation and entertainment so tourists don’t come and no one will provide the required accommodation and activities because tourists don’t come. Such is life.

  6. Well I don’t think you did need to pad out your blog with a slug photo, but they are just as deserving of fame. Glorious photos as ever. Perhaps your tiredness comes with the relaxation of not having to stay up late to watch the Olympics now.

  7. Glad the Loiellet sonata went well with guest accompaniment.
    Also, good news about the better site for the Tourist Information.

  8. Love the flower photos especially the white poppy and the nigella is a pretty colour- look forward to seeing its seed pods. Wonder what Matilda is thinking!

  9. Beautiful photo of Matilda and her friend!

    That black slug is a very familiar character. We have both the European red and black slugs here, as well as my favorite slug, Limax maximus. Limax maximus is 4 times faster than the native banana slug, making it the cheetah of the slug world. Also quite useful as it is predatory to other slugs.

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