Today’s guest picture comes from my friend and former colleague, Marjorie. She came upon these stunning fungi on a walk a few days ago.
It was a dry but grey morning and the forecast was not too bad for the rest of the day so my mind turned to cycling.
Before I set off, I had coffee and a slice of toast to think about and the birds to to watch as well.
They must have been reading the blog because after yesterday’s complaint about not enough birds, they came in better numbers today and the feeder was soon filled with goldfinches…
…with more anxious to join in.
This made for photo opportunities…
…and bad tempered exchanges…
…and curious chaffinches.
The goldfinches in possession of a perch tried to ignore outside distractions and kept their heads well down while they could for the most part.
In the end, I put down the bird watching camera and packed my cycling camera into the pocket of a stout waterproof bright yellow jacket and got out my bicycle, noting two particoloured jackdaws at the apples as I set off.
There was a brisk north easterly wind blowing and it pushed me over Callister and along the newly surfaced road past the quarry to Paddockhole. I stopped there for half a banana and a look at the bridge.
The bridge has a bright red metal plate screwed to the parapet and when I looked at the parapet, I could see that turning lorries may have been knocking into it a bit, hence the need for the warning and protective plate…
…but the parapet was sound enough to be home to a nice pixie cup lichen among the moss and a fallen beech nut.
The reason for the lorry traffic over the bridge is a new windfarm in the area so the narrow road after the bridge is being widened and lay-bys are being put in to cope with the construction vehicles.
Luckily there was very little traffic on the road as I battled up the hill alongside the Water of Milk straight into the brisk wind. I was heading for the watershed between the Water of Milk and the River Esk and it took me some time.
It was lucky that I had my stout rainproof jacket on as it was drizzling at this point. It was a bit annoying to look to my right and see the Ewe Hill wind farm bathed in sunshine.
I pressed on, crossing little bridges over little streams…
…until I got to the sunlit uplands on the top of the hill. I love this section of road.
To my right I could see more wind turbines making good use of the enthusiastic breeze…
…and once I had got over the hill, I could see the Esk valley stretching in front of me. The road follows that line of trees along the right side of the valley.
The rain had blown over by now and I enjoyed a sunny trip back down the river into Langholm. Larches stood out in the sunshine.
With seven miles to go, I stopped for the other half of my banana and a drink at the Enzieholm bridge. Naturally, I had a look at the parapet while I was there.
There was some good autumn colour on a hedge at Bentpath village…
…and I stopped to take a close up of a larch beside the road further on just to show that they really are golden at this time of year.
I had a look back at the Douglen Cleuch…
..before climbing the last hill of the day and swooping down into the town. It was only a 26 miles ride but because of the wind and several hills to climb, it had seemed like more and I was very satisfied as it had felt like a proper outing.
Mrs Tootlepedal had been busy painting the hall while I was away. It is looking very exciting already.
I had a look round the garden when I got home and was impressed by the staying power of the Rosy Cheeks rose and the very late phlox but the most arresting thing was the sudden appearance of a cowslip among the expected clematis, potentilla and wallflower.
I had a shower and than went for a walk. I am supposed to keep exercising my feet and there was a little sunshine left so I headed off to see if I could find the fungi that Marjorie had photographed.
My usual friend was standing on the usual rock in the Esk…
…and two goosanders were swimming up the river nearby.
I should have been quicker to go walking as the sun was already sinking behind the hill and this was the last sunny view I got…
…before crossing the Sawmill Brig and walking round the pheasant pens. I didn’t find Marjorie’s fungi but I saw other varieties…
… before I crossed the Duchess Bridge and made my way home.
As you can see, the bridge is in need of some TLC.
The slow cooked venison stew made a third and final appearance for our evening meal and it was followed by some tarte tatin which I had made when I got back from my walk. I may need therapeutic help as I think that I have become addicted to tarte tatin.
When I checked, I discovered that the forecast for the next week is for some inclement and wintery weather with a maximum temperature of 7 degrees and plenty of rain so that made today’s ride and stroll even more pleasant in retrospect.
I apologise for an excessive number of pictures but it was an interesting day and here is a FBotD to round it off.
27 thoughts on “More going round in circles”
Theres worse things to be addicted to. Feel no shame!!😁
Fair enough. 🙂
I thought the blue fungi were flowers at first. They’re amazing, and quite rare too, I would think.
I can see why you would love that section of road. It almost makes me want to get my bike out.
The water in that shot of the goosanders is beautifully colored.
I like the evening sun on the peat coloured water in the evening. It provides a rich set of colours.
The colours of the fungi are quite remarkable. What colour is your hallway now?
Like the jackdaws is is presently particoloured as some has been finished in deep red and some still has a brown undercoat.
Fine view at the Sawmill Brig.
You can never put in too many pictures, you provide such a variety there is something to please everyone.
That fungi is gorgeous! How I would love to see it in my yard. Yay for windmills and yay for Scotland! But the Water of Milk? Various images are clicking through my brain and all of them are odd.
A land of milk and honey goes through my mind when i cycle along its banks.
Such accommodating, literate, birds. I’ve never seen blue fungus. I might prefer to avoid crossing that bridge.
It is the oldest cast iron bridge in Scotland so it has stood the test of time.
Never apologize on the number of photos. I enjoy seeing the countryside and views of the very small and underfoot to the beautiful vistas. Your guest fungus photo is quite lovely, too. I wonder what kind of fungus that is?
The birds and continuing commentary on the feeders is also quite enjoyable. Your jackdaws with white marbling are interesting. I see that among the crows here from time to time.
That larches are looking particularly bright, like golden candles in the forest. There are no larches near the farm here, sadly. I remember seeing many of them near where I lived back east. I may have to get a couple to plant out back.
The mushrooms are probably oyster mushrooms. I have never seen any so blue before.
We have blue oyster mushrooms here, grown commercially by one of the local farmers, but I have never seen them that intense a blue.
I love all the photo’s keep it up.
I will do my best. Thank you Jackie.
The perfect amount of photos to chart another interesting and happy day in the Borders! I’d wear a life jacket crossing that bridge! We had lots of rain here today which was such a pity as the trees had really autumn colours so especially good to see your autumn hedges in brighter conditions.
The autumn colour has been generally disappointing but there are small pockets here and there where it has hung on well.
You can never post to many pictures for my liking! Your guest photo of the blue fungus is lovely – I’ve never seen any fungi quite as blue as that before. It was also good to see the old iron bridge; it does need some TLC! The views from your cycle ride were glorious, especially that of the Douglen Cleuch.
I wondered if Marjorie’s camera had had a hand in the extreme blueness.
There was a lot going on in the Douglen view. 🙂
Beautiful photos, the blue funghi is really something.
The photo of the Douglen Cleuch is exquisite. Those fungi are so cobalt blue; I have never seen anything like it.
Lavinia, I am also determined to find a spot for a couple of larches! I wonder if deer bother them.
That blue fungi is exceptional. I’ve never seen anything like it.
I haven’t either