More faltering steps

derby bridge

Today’s guest picture is a small bridge across one of the ditches on the River Derwent flood plain that my brother crossed on his walk.  The low sun ensured that his shadow never got far away from him!  (I am open for new guest pictures.)

derby bridge

We had a slightly colder and slightly greyer day today but it didn’t halt the very gentle progress towards recovery.  I am fine as long as I take things very slowly but Mrs Tootlepedal is still pretty flat and spending time in bed.

In another first though, I got the car running in the morning and drove down to the Co-operative Store  to do a little shopping, more for the sake of checking that the car was OK after a week of idleness than the urgent need for provisions.  We have been eating so little that we have both lost weight.  Under normal circumstances a bit of weight loss would have been very welcome but we don’t recommend catching flu as a sound dieting method.

As well as the shopping, I made some bread and cooked a pan of soup so I didn’t have much time to look at the birds.  This was no great loss as there were very few birds about today even when I did look.

The poor light led to poor pictures…


…so I didn’t waste a lot of time.


I had to go and open up the Day Centre for an Embroiderers’ Guild meeting after lunch as Mrs Tootlepedal would normally do this.

I cycled up to the town to unlock the door and then cycled off up the Wauchope road  to keep my legs turning over.  It was a bit colder and windier than yesterday so I just went a bit slower today and got on not too badly.  Once again, I stopped from time to time to give my breathing a break.

I like the way that trees grow out of the banks of the small burns on the hillsides at a jaunty angle.

Earnshaw burn tree

I had parked the slow bike on the bridge when I walked up to take the tree picture and when I went back to it…

Earnshaw bridge

…I was very struck by the combination of lichen and moss on the bridge parapet.

Earnshaw bridge lichen

Life’s a jungle.

Earnshaw bridge lichen

Further up the road, I was brought to a halt by a perfectly upholstered stone in the wall beside the road.  It is most unusual.

wall moss

While I was stopped, I had a look at the next few metres of the wall.  It was a good place to spend a few minutes.

The colour of the day prize definitely went to a lichen with this very striking burst of yellow.

wall lichen Xanthoria parietina

It was so vivid that I might have thought that it was a paint spill at first sight but a closer look…

wall lichen Xanthoria parietina

…showed me that it is probably xanthoria parietina, a lichen I more usually see on concrete fence posts.


Another elegant clump of moss could be seen and …..


…a striking but pale lichen rounded off my inspection.


I could have picked many more lichens and mosses within a few yards but I didn’t want to stay standing around for too long as it wasn’t very warm.

I cycled up the Cleuchfoot road and lifted my eyes up from moss and lichen to admire the scenery.

Bigholms Burn

Cleuchfoot road

I went through the farm yard and took a picture just to show that not all our bridges are made of beautifully cut stones.

Cleuchfoot farm bridge

I like the valley beyond Cleuchfoot farmhouse.  There is something very restful about it.

Arisgill valley cleuchfoot

It is possible to ride up a track across the hill below the larch plantation which you can see ahead of me and come back to join the Wauchope road further along……

Arisgill valley cleuchfoot

…but that would have required more time and energy than I had so I turned round and eased gently back down the hill into town.  A circuit of the New Town brought my distance up to to 10 miles and I don’t know when I have been more pleased with a 10 mile cycle ride at 8mph.

And that, as they say, concluded the entertainment for the day.  I am going to see if I can sing tomorrow.

A perching bird of the day today.



Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

26 thoughts on “More faltering steps

  1. Sorry to hear that you have both been laid low with flu. I hope that you are both fully recovered soon.

  2. Having the flu is indeed a hard way to lose weight. It is great that you felt well enough to go on a bike ride. Some of those pictures of lichen and moss look as though they could have been taken under water.

  3. Sorry recovery is so slow, hope for better news tomorrow. The lichens and mosses that you photographed are well worth looking at, thank you for such interesting pictures.

  4. I liked the lichen and moss photos from the day, but I loved the landscape images from along your ride. The hills and valleys do look very peaceful and relaxing in your photos, but I’ll bet that at times, the wind comes roaring through the valleys at quite a clip.

  5. The wall stone with moss on it obviously has something that all the other stones don’t have, and I wonder if it is lime.
    That yellow lichen is a beautiful thing. I wish we had more like it.
    Seeing a snow less landscape isn’t possible here right now so I was happy to see yours.
    I’m glad you are feeling better. I hope Mrs. T will follow.

  6. Very sorry Mrs T is still laid low, do hope she will soon feel better.
    You will be an expert on lichens soon, if not already.

  7. Lovely photos of the lichen and trees . I especially like the trees reflected in the water and the cushioned stone. Get well soon message to Mrs T.

  8. So much beautiful color in the lichens and mosses! Everything on my side of the pond is frozen and gray. I hope Mrs. T’s condition improves soon. There is nothing better this time of year than soup and bread. Period.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: