Today’s guest picture is a lupin in the wild taken by our son Tony on one of his walks….
…and as a change from my usual practice, I have put another guest picture in the post today to show Tony’s lupin in context.
I had hoped to go on a longer and slower bike ride today because when I looked at it yesterday, the forecast was quite promising. However, when I looked at the forecast today, it was only promising rain and on this occasion it was right and it started to rain quite heavily during the morning. I was glad not to be some miles from home getting soaked.
I passed the morning in traditional fashion, doing the crossword, reading the papers, going to our corner shop before the rain started, drinking coffee and putting a week of the newspaper index into the Archive Group’s database.
From time to time I glanced out of the window at the re-positioned feeder and was encouraged. A dunnock may have sat on the hedge…
…but sparrows were not backward in coming forward….
…and siskins arrived with the determination…
…to shout at anyone and everyone.
As the time got near to three o’clock in the afternoon, the rain stopped and I put my cycling clothes on and peered out of the back door. I prayed that the black clouds that I could see were going rather than coming…
…and set off up the road.
It was dull but there is a lot of clover about which brightens up the verges.
It was still pretty grey by the time that I got to Wauchope Schoolhouse so I considered skulking about in the valley bottom, ready to dash for home if it started to rain heavily again but in the end, I plucked up my courage and headed over the hill and down to Canonbie.
The many thousands of tubes which appear when old commercial woods are felled and replanted contain deciduous trees as part of the conditions for replanting. I don’t know what the overall success rate for them is, but this batch at the Kerr wood, seem to be pretty fruitful.
The grass is growing strongly now that we have had a bit of rain and this belted Galloway was enjoying a good graze, too busy to look up as I went past.
As the clouds continued to look threatening and the light got worse as I went along, I didn’t stop for many pictures but I thought that I would show that the rain has put a bit of life back into the Esk with this shot from Hollows Bridge…
..and while I was on the bridge, I couldn’t miss this fruitful twig just beside the parapet.
I was brought up short when I went through Hollows village to see the Tower wrapped up like a Christmas present.
It looks as though some serious repairs are contemplated.
My final stop was forced on me as I had to wait for the traffic on the main road to clear when I left the bike path so I took a look across the road while i was standing there.
Although the ride was shorter than I had hoped, I was still pleased to have got twenty miles in without getting rained on. There were a few spots of rain just when I got back to Langholm but they came to nothing and I could have gone a bit further.
Instead I had a cup of tea and some toast, put a new loaf to cook in the bread maker and walked round the garden before having my shower.
The bees were as busy as ever on the cotoneaster horizontalis.
The new lupins are developing well even if there aren’t as many as them as in the crop that Tony saw.
The roses would like to come out but they would like more sun and less rain….
…as would we all. After several weeks with no rain, we have now had four inches in a week and a half and we think that this is quite enough to be going on with.
The philadelphus bushes are enjoying the weather more than we are.
Following a recipe suggestion, Mrs Tootlepedal made chicken breasts stuffed with soft cheese and spinach for our tea and unusually, the result looked exactly like, the illustration that went with the recipe. It tasted jolly good too.
Since I had two guest pictures to start the post, I am going to have two flying birds of the day to finish it.
I think that the new feeder position is very promising for flying bird opportunities.