Today’s guest picture comes from South Africa and was sent to me by far flung Langholm exile, Tom. He tells me that he travelled up north to the Kimberley area and came across the Old Wagon Bridge. It crosses the Orange River near Hopetown where the first diamond was found in South Africa.
The weather was even more miserable than usual today, being wet, windy and cold but once again we had escaped the worst as roads blocked by snow were reported to both the north and south of us.
It was quite bad enough to be going on with in Langholm so we were glad to be spared worse.
There was nothing much to do in the morning except to walk up to the town under my big umbrella to do a little business and look out of the window mournfully when I got back.
The birds were not bothered by the wind and the rain and arrived in numbers so that the feeders were almost always busy.
The chaffinches have got bolder and this little siskin was about to be dislodged by the royal order of the chaffinch boot.
Goldfinches are the most patient of our finches and will wait for an vacant perch.
The feeders were sometimes full and calm…
…and sometimes full and frantic.
Other than siskins, chaffinches and goldfinches, the garden has very few other bird visitors at the moment and i haven’t seen a brambling, redpoll, greenfinch, blue tit, coal tit or robin for some time. There are occasional dunnocks though and a regular blackbird.
I did try to walk round the garden and take a picture of new flowers but trying to take pictures with the camera in one hand and my umbrella waving violently about in the wind in the other proved impossible.
The daffodils on the back path did their best to cheer me up.
After a very early lunch, we went off to the Infirmary in Dumfries where my eye was going to be looked at. I have had a couple of small, harmless but mildly annoying cysts under the lid of my left eye and various medical practitioners have been assuring me for many weeks that they were quite harmless and would go away of their own accord. I was very pleased therefore when the doctor magicked them away with the merest touch of a needle today and my eye feels much more cheerful already.
The visit was painless in every sense. We arrived a bit early for my appointment but I was seen, treated and discharged almost before my true appointment time had come.
It was still raining when Mrs Tootlepedal drove me home but we stopped for a cup of tea and some reasonable priced compost at a garden centre on our way. It has discovered that dinosaurs sell just as well as plants and pots….
…and has a large dinosaur attraction for young visitors. I don’t think that the dinosaurs are alive though.
There was a lull in the rain when we got home and I tried to capture the new flowers again.
I found a more stable silver pear bud showing promise…
…and a wallflower with its own swimming pool.
The day continued to be soggy in the extreme so Mrs Tootlepedal got busy on her interior decorating project and I did the crossword and practised my flute and some songs.
After tea, I went off to sing with our local choir. We have got some enjoyable music to sing but our conductor was in such a brisk mood tonight that not much of it had sunk in by the end of the evening. Still, we have homes especially so that we can practise songs.
Looking at the forecast, we are promised a spell of brighter, drier weather and this will be most welcome, particularly if the wind drops a bit too.
I did find a flying siskin in the gloom.