Today’s guest picture is another from Dropscone’s continental excursion and shows a fine bridge over the Schlei at Kappeln in Schleswig-Flensburg. Dropscone points out that it is just the same as Tower Bridge in London….but without the towers of course.
Our spell of warm weather continued today and it was up to a most unseasonal 20°C by mid morning and when the sun came out, it became positively hot.
The fat balls on the feeder have become sparrow magnets.
But I managed to tear myself away from the kitchen window and get the final stage of my Archive Group charity return to the regulators completed. This was a weight off my mind. It is one of those tasks, quite simple in itself, for which the word procrastination is designed. I suffer from chronic formophobia but I should have learned to overcome this by now. Still, it is done.
After a cup of coffee with Mrs Tootlepedal, I spent some time cleaning my fairly speedy bike as it had been wheezing and groaning a bit on my last ride. When this was done, I sat on it and went for a pedal.
I was back home three minutes later as I had forgotten my bike glasses but this worked out well as Mrs Tootlepedal, who was toiling in the garden, pointed out a painted lady butterfly….
…and I noticed a red admiral not far away.
I was going on my standard 20 mile pedal down to Canonbie across country and then back by the old A7 and I stopped to add a picture of the bridge over the Esk at Canonbie to my recent bridge portfolio.
Although it was a lovely morning and the river was busy but not full, a glance at the bank above where I was standing….
…showed just how high the Esk had been on Friday night after some heavy rain. The level would have been above my head as I stood on the edge of the water.
All was quiet today though and I had a last look through the bridge….
….and then pedalled home in very good humour on dry roads in the warm sunshine with little or no wind.
There were more butterflies to be seen when I got back.
The painted lady had been replaced by a peacock.
Mrs Tootlepedal was busy doing some severe plant shifting requiring a pick axe while I had a light lunch and then we set about trimming the hedge along the road. It had got a bit hairy…
…although it only seems like yesterday that I gave it its last trim.
As you can see from the wires along the pavement, we were intending to use our electric hedge trimmer but the rotten thing wouldn’t work and after trying every connection, we gave it up as a bad job and settled for hand powered shears.
Mrs Tootlepedal had been working too long in the sun though by this time and had to go in and lie down in a darkened room for a moment so I clipped away by myself until, providentially, the sun went in and Mrs Tootlepedal came out again.
Together we got the job done….
…and though it is not a thing of dead straight lines and knife edge creases, we look at it as a creative work of art reflecting the troubled world that we live in and we are content.
Mrs Tootlepedal kept the shears at work by trimming a yew bush in the garden…
…while I snapped a few flowers….
…and spotted more butterflies.
I am very happy about the number of butterflies appearing now. It is not as large as in some previous years but it is more than we were expecting after cold weather at a crucial time.
I looked at some other flowers too and thought that the buds of a Fuchsia, hanging like lanterns, were perhaps just as pretty as the flowers in this light.
I always enjoy an astrantia and our pale variety has produced some late flowers.
On the edge of the freshly mown lawn, gently green nicotiana blended with yellow crocosmia.
I was able to pick apples for stewing and enough of our autumn fruiting raspberries to have a plate of raspberries and cream at tea time. The front lawn had dried out enough to make mowing it a pleasure and I even did a bit of dead heading in an effort to keep the dahlias and poppies going. Some aspects of gardening are most enjoyable.
While I was clipping the hedge, my trio playing fried Mike had appeared with a new Mozart trio which he has just bought. It is an arrangement of the trio in E flat K.498 (Kegelstadt) for oboe, bassoon and piano and will do very well for our flute, cello and piano trio. Music for our combination is hard to come by. I looked at it when I got in from the garden and enjoyed what I saw.
I went to make a cup of tea for the gardener and me and looked out of the window while we were sipping away….
…and received a hard stare for my trouble.
The jackdaw flew off however and was instantly replace by squabbling sparrows…
…while a dunnock was happy to scavenge for tidbits under the feeder.
If you have a glut of courgettes, I can heartily recommend courgette fritters. Mrs Tootlepedal has a good recipe for them, and they are delicious, like potato latkes but better. I could eat them every day which is handy as we have a lot of courgettes to get through. Visitors almost always leave with a courgette or two with them. We had some fritters for our tea with the last of the venison stew.
Later on we enjoyed some stewed apple and custard. It was a good eating evening.
The flower of the day is a sunflower which Mrs Tootlepedal found bent over to the ground behind some other plants. She has staked it up and it is looking none the worse for its adventures.
The flying bird of the day is one of the disputatious sparrows, flapping furiously as it approached the feeder..