Today’s guest picture comes from my brother Andrew and shows Great Malvern Priory. He tells me that when Henry VIII’s men came to sell off Great Malvern Priory, they accepted £20 from the parish for the Priory church (after removing the lead from the roof!)
We had one of those days which the weather gods must have found very amusing.
In the morning, when I was free to go for a walk and see nuthatches and wonderful wild flowers, it rained persistently. The rain stopped as we were having lunch and then the day cleared up very nicely just as we had to head off for Carlisle for our weekly choir practice.
It was still very nice when we got back but by that time the light had faded and I was too tired to make any good use of a lovely evening.
The reason that we were both tired was that after whizzing up to Glasgow on the main line (in 90 minutes) late yesterday afternoon and enjoying a wonderful performance of Verdi’s requiem by the Bearsden choir (of well over a hundred singers) and the Orchestra of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland with top quality soloists under the direction of our choir conductor Andrew Nunn, we then had to catch a very slow train back to Carlisle.
Nothing condescends to go down the main line on a Saturday night so we found ourselves on a two coach local train which trundled through the wilds of Ayrshire and Dumfriesshire at a very sedate pace (150 minutes) and in the end, we got back home at half past one in the morning.
The train was packed with young and youngish people returning home after a good night out in the city and a flavour of the journey can be gathered by the fact at one time, in the midst of some serious unrest, the nice lady sitting next to me leant over and said, “You’ll be all right dear, I’m a trained martial arts instructor.”
This was in fact, very reassuring.
Still it all passed the time well and we got home safely.
So as far as today went, I never got further than the far end of the garden with my camera.
The Japanese azalea is coming out. It is a wonderful colour.
The last of the other azaleas is about to join the party too.
Geraniums are popping up all over the place but my current two favourites are these ones.
I like the detailed work that the designer has put into these flowers.
What is better that one Camassia? Three Camassias of course…..
…though I see that from a photographer’s point of view, these are one of those annoying plants that start dying at the bottom before they are finished at the top. This is definitely one of those cases when you can’t have everything.
It fell to us to pick up Andrew, our conductor and Gillian, our accompanist from the station in Carlisle today. They come down from Glasgow every week for our practice and I must say, Andrew’s energy seems inexhaustible and far from being a mere shadow of himself after last night’s concert, he was in excellent form and put our choir through our paces without flagging.
We are very fortunate to have the services of such an accomplished musician (even if he does give the tenors a hard time).
After the practice, we dropped Andrew and Gillian off at the station and then made our way home.
I had prepared a lamb stew in the morning while Mrs Tootlepedal sang with the church choir and in a moment of supreme efficiency, I had not only put the stew into the slow cooker but I had also turned the slow cooker on so this week we were able to enjoy a hot meal when we got in.
I had time for a last walk round the garden before we ate.
An aquilegia turned its head and winked at me as I went past.
Our tree peony is thriving but its flowers are deeply and darkly buried among the leaves….
…and need a helping hand if they are to be seen.
In the vegetable garden the chives are flowering….
…and the rosemary continues to do very well.
With a busy day ahead tomorrow, it seems like a good night for an early bed.
No flying bird of the day today but a young sparrow stands in as ‘bathing bird’ of the day.