Holding my breath

Osmaston

Today’s guest picture shows the village pond in Osmaston, Derbyshire.  It was passed by my brother Andrew while on an outing with his walking group.

Osmaston

After a moment of dry weather before breakfast, the day very soon reverted to type and got wet.

tulip
The tulips are trying their best despite the weather

Dropscone rang me up  from the golf course where he was hitting a few balls before the rain arrived and we arranged to have a cup of coffee.

I was expecting treacle scones as it was Friday but he arrived bringing the standard issue with him.  He had gone to buy some treacle from our local Co-operative Store but they had been literally unable to get their doors to open so he had had to return empty handed.

The standard scones were very good.

The main business of the day was waiting very nervously to see if a change in my internet provider would go smoothly.  After staying with my previous provider ever since I first connected to the internet, I had been put off enough by the poor customer relations of the big firm which had recently taken them over to change to a new provider.

I got an absurdly good deal from my new supplier which is entirely based on the (probably justified) hope that I won’t bother to change when the rate goes sharply up after a year.  I was promised that the whole change over would happen seamlessly without the need for me to do anything more than plug in a new router when told and greatly to my surprise, this turned out to be true.

Not only that, the provision was, as promised, a great deal speedier than my old one.  This is very unsettling and i am still expecting bad things to happen but meanwhile I am very happy and shooting pictures up the line onto the WordPress server at great speed.

Osmaston

As it was raining pretty well all morning, I was quite happy to wait in and watch birds while the switch over happened, even though the light was terrible.

chaffinch and goldfinch
The birds were quite happy to quarrel

We had regular visits from the sparrowhawk but it was too quick for me today and I didn’t even get the camera raised let alone take a picture of it.

We also got regular visits from redpolls who did hang about a bit more.

redpoll

I took a picture of one beside a siskin….

redpoll

…which shows how similar they are in size.  When they have their back to you and the red head and chest is not visible, they are often hard to pick out among the siskins.

As I said, the switch over went smoothly and while Mrs Tootlepedal went off to Hawick on business, I noticed that the rain had stopped so I went for a walk.

The wind hadn’t stopped along with the rain and it was blowing too briskly for comfortable walking in exposed places so I just tramped through the puddles round Gaskell’s Walk.

There was the usual selection of lichens to enjoy.

lichens

They are often little works of art.

The larch trees are just beginning to turn green which is a very cheering sight…

Larch in spring

…and the willows are working hard too…

willow

…though the wind made taking good pictures of them tricky.

It was still rather gloomy so I thought that a black and white tree might demonstrate the feel of the day…

b/w tree

…but perhaps this one getting its feet wet….

tree and puddle

…shows the day off better.

I was pleased to see an old friend at Pool Corner…

heron

…and I was very impressed by this colour daffodil beside the road there.

daffodil

When I got back home, I put the dry weather to some good use by sieving some compost and mowing the front lawn and the drying green.  I am thinking of applying to have the garden designated as a national centre for moss.

There are new flowers to be seen in the garden though.  There are fritillaries…

fritillary
The brisk wind blew one flower head up to reveal the riches within.

…and the very first tulips to open a little…

tulips

….and the daffodils are at their peak.

daffodil

I just need the wind to drop and the sun to come out.

When I get bored with the birds outside the kitchen window, which is very rarely, Mrs Tootlepedal has provided me other things to look at.

flowers under the feeder

 When she came home from Hawick, we discussed whether the tulips were a bit earlier this year than usual so I looked at last year’s posts for this time and discovered that we are perhaps a week further forward than we would usually be.

Looking at the posts was rather disturbing because I discovered that my life runs in very well regulated channels and last year’s pictures are uncannily similar to this year’s efforts.  I even noticed that I had done more or less the same long cycle run to Caerlaverock last year as I just did this year.   I will have to try to get a bit of photographic variety into my life.

Nature is repetitive though and looking at last year’s posts for early April, I saw several pictures of a sparrowhawk in the garden and this year again,  we have had several visits from one over the past few days.

In the evening in a very welcome piece of repetition, Mike and Alison came round and Alison and I played Corelli, Rameau and Loeillet along with Greensleeves on a Ground from the Division Flute.  Unlike the new internet connection, we took things at a very steady pace and as a result we enjoyed our playing a lot.

I didn’t get a good flying bird picture today and have had to settle for this ‘two for the price of one’ effort.

flying chaffinch flying goldfinch

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

25 thoughts on “Holding my breath

  1. It’s nice to see the willow blossoms. I was going to go and see if ours were blossoming tomorrow but we’re having another snowstorm so I doubt they will be.
    I’m glad the changeover went well. They can devolve quickly into a real mess but I’m happy to say the last one I did went well too.
    The fritillaries, tulips, and hellebores are beautiful.

    1. I am very sorry to hear about your impending snowstorm. You must be thoroughly sick of your weather lately. I am a bit unhappy for myself too as this probably means some bad weather for us in a week or two.

  2. Lovely flower pictures from your garden and the black and white tree was a winner, save it for a competition entry in the future. Glad your internet has entered a new phase successfully.

  3. For a couple of seconds in your penultimate paragraph, I thought you were making a bilingual pun. The French for ‘rehearsal’ is ‘répétition’.

      1. You’re really welcome – I love those pictures of the birds in flight on your blog – Such detail! … I seem to catch mainly blurs when I try 🙂

  4. Dear Tom, Your blog was the nearest to test on. Sorry What a problem both Mike and I have had with the phone line and Broadband. I think it is now fixed. Isabel.

  5. Love all the flower photos especially that daffodil at Pool Corner and the daffs in your garden. It’s good to read that nature is repeating itself and you too on your bike rides – I like life when it is ordered!

  6. I love the orange-centred daffodils! Nice to see the green haze of the larches’ new leaves, the black-and-white photo of the tree and the excellent willow catkin.

  7. Mr. Grumpy seems to be enjoying the day, and the daffodils. That is a beautiful specimen with the orange center.

    The lichens are works of art. I particularly like that panel of 4.

  8. It saves much time to be able to upload photos quickly

    Lovely fritillaries, another favourite of mine.

    My life and blog is also repetitive from year to year. I’ve been meaning to look back to see if last year I had more done in the garden and at work by now. But maybe I don’t want to know.

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