Today’s guest picture, sent to me by her father, shows Matilda posing with flowers in the botanic gardens in Edinburgh.
The forecast had suggested that if I wanted to cycle in dry conditions, a prompt start might be advisable as rain was on the way by midday It seemed like a plausible prediction so I arranged with Dropscone for coffee at eleven and set off after breakfast to go round my customary 20 mile Canonbie circuit.
Although I could see rain across the plain below when I got to the top of the hill after 5 miles, I stuck to my belief in the forecast and pedalled on. I took the precaution though of not stopping to take any pictures as I went round and my only pause was to answer a text from Sandy on the possibility of coffee. I got round dry.
Both Dropscone and Sandy arrived on cue for coffee (and scones with apple jelly) and I was interested to find that Dropscone had a acquired a new second hand car as his previous vehicle after well over 100,000 miles had come to the end of its useful life. His new vehicle is a youthful 7 year old. It was also interesting to find out that Sandy had bought a new camera as his old pocket camera had also come to the end of its days.
After coffee, with the rain still holding off, Mrs Tootlepedal and I did some gardening. I mowed a lawn and did some shredding while Mrs Tootlepedal was in Attila the Gardener mode and did useful clearing up and letting light in.
I let some light into my camera.
The new bed continues to thrive and there are even a few second flush delphiniums threatening to come out.
Old friends are still flowering:
Elsewhere there were small insects to make up for the lack of butterflies.
Easy to spot on the dahlia but harder to see hidden in a lamium flower.
Mrs Tootlepedal has tried a new more dainty hosta this year and they are just coming into flower.
A few flowers on a new dicentra offer promise of a great sensation next year.
And the onset of autumn can no longer be denied…
…even though summer sights are still to be seen.
A small yellow weed with a prickly leaf has sprouted in the soon to be dismantled strawberry bed.
We had to leave the garden when the promised rain started at lunchtime and as it is still continuing as I wrote this in the evening, the only other flowers that I saw today were tastefully arranged by the head gardener in a vase indoors.
I had plenty of Archive Group work to do though so I wasn’t bored and I found time to set up the tripod and get the camera to do some bird watching.
The sparrows were back, both on the seed feeder….
…and on the fat balls.
A few chaffinches appeared and with the sparrows went in for sideways flying in a big way.
There was formation flying as well.
Later in the afternoon, while Mrs Tootlepedal did her embroidery accounts on the computer, I made a pound of raspberries that I had picked before the rain arrived into two jars of quick raspberry jam.
Then my flute pupil Luke came and we started work on a trio sonata by Quantz which is quite demanding on finger agility and counting skills so we won’t be short of things to practice when the long nights draw in.
We are in for that meteorological paradox, a steady spell of changeable weather and gardening, cycling and walking will be a hit and miss affair for the next ten days. It helps when, like today, the forecast is accurate. I live in hope on that front.
The flying bird of the day is an elegantly arched chaffinch.