Acquired pleasure

Raised beds

Today’s guest picture shows some raised beds which our daughter Annie is constructing for her London allotment.  I look forward to seeing them again later in the year.

Raised beds

The weather was unseasonably warm and calm today but generally rather grey and cloudy again.

Our Carlisle choir started for the new session today and in traditional Sunday mode, I made a stew for the slow cooker while Mrs Tootlepedal went off to church.  When I had finished, my daughter Annie and I went out for another short pedal.

The day looked very gloomy when we set off and some cows gave us a hard stare as if wondering about our wisdom…

Cows on Warbla

…but the further we got from the town, the better the weather got and by the time that we had got to our turning point at Westwater…

Westwater cottage

…there were breaks in the clouds and the sun had even come out.

The big house looked very snug, set in among the surrounding hills.


As we looked towards the town on our return journey, the clouds looked quite threatening…

Clouds over Langholm

…but we thought that it looked fine enough for a short diversion up the Cleuchfoot road to add a couple of miles to our ride.  As well as an excellent surface, a rare thing round us, this short section of road has many charming views.

Glencorf burn

We got home after 11  miles without getting rained on and there was time for a look out of the window at the feeders before lunch.  The feeders were not busy but a small flock of about ten goldfinches were interested in the seeds.

Sometimes coming….
…and sometimes going…
…but often sharing.

We had baked potatoes for lunch and then set off to Carlisle to sing with our choir.  Annie came with us and she took a stroll round the city centre while we sang and then came into to listen to the end of the practice.

We are getting ready for a competition at the end of February and this doesn’t leave us a lot of time so our conductor  got us working hard from the start and didn’t waste a minute during the session.  I was pleasantly surprised to be able to sing at all as I have had a persistently ‘sticky’ throat, not sore but annoying, which I can’t get rid of.  Thanks to the good warm up and not singing too loudly, I lasted the whole session.

I have been taking Sanderson’s Specific Throat gargle and Wakeman’s menthol throat and chest sweets without any noticeable benefit and I was very grateful when Annie revealed that she had thoughtfully bought me two more throat remedies while she was in the town centre.  The sheer volume of all this stuff must surely get my throat cleared at last.

The slow cooked stew turned out well and we settled down for a quiet evening in.

There is no flower or leaf of the day today so a bare tree from our bike ride will have to do instead…

Wauchope School tree

…but there is a faintly fuzzy flying goldfinch of the day in spite of the cloudy weather.

flying goldfinch

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

29 thoughts on “Acquired pleasure

  1. Glad you were able to make it through the choir practice. I have read that eating salty things can help alleviate the sticky throat problem.

    We had another ice storm here yesterday and this morning. Not as bad (or as pretty) as the last one, but enough to make travel difficult.

  2. Have you tried Proctor’s Pinelyptus Pastilles? One left tucked between upper teeth and cheeks at the beginning of the rehearsal and renewed – if necessary – might possibly help.

      1. “For clarity of voice. Especially valuable for singers, public speakers and actors. As used by Lords, Ladies, Principal Public Speakers and Members of Parliament for over a hundred years.”

  3. Hope the throat gets better soon. I have had a recurring sore throat and tickly cough for about a month! I like the bare tree and the charming view very much.

    1. We have had generally very dry weather for what seems like months. It has been damp and grey but it really hasn’t rained much at all and our hilly country drains quickly too.

  4. Isolated trees have a beauty all their own, don’t they? Hope one of the remedies works some magic on your throat.

      1. Definitely. A few years ago I got tired of bending over to pick beans and built 32″ high garden boxes – absolutely no bending required!

  5. Lovely views on your ride and very smart goldfinches. All the boards around my raised beds have rotted away so seeing your daughter’s hard work has inspired some enthusiasm here but waiting for better weather to start work!

  6. Those raised beds look interesting. Hope everything thrives in them
    Glad about the throat remedies, and that you were able to sing anyway.

  7. Great post as usual, glad to read you’re still pedalling, making use of the mild weather. I haven’t been so lucky, yes the weather’s still mild, but I have succumbed to a viral flu and now some sort pain in my back, keeping me off my bike………doah!! Keep pedalling

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