Today’s guest picture comes from Dropscone. The golf course is closed at the moment so he is going for walks and he passed one of my favourite trees a day or two ago. He thinks that it is a bit like us, just hanging on by the skin of its teeth.
It was colder today and the wind was stronger so when the sun stopped shining, it didn’t feel like spring at all.
But when the sun was shining in the morning, nothing could have looked more cheerful than this delicately outlined beauty.
Slightly less elegant is the comfrey but any flowers are welcome.
There were even one or two chaffinches at the feeder…
…though they wouldn’t visit when I was looking.
There was tidying up work in the garden again as Mrs Tootlepedal did more work on the log store and I attacked an innocent bush with the hedge trimmer. There was a lot of shredding too. Then I did some shopping but failed to see any interesting waterside birds on my way home.
Mrs Tootlepedal knocked up some lentil soup for lunch and afterwards I went for a walk.
I had ambitious plans to walk over some rough country and up a steep hill (and on my way to see some interesting things).
I did see a distant dipper at the Sawmill Brig…
…but it flew off before I could get a clear shot.
And I noticed that the peltigera lichen on the wall had got white edges which looked interesting so I looked closer. They were interesting.
I walked along the track north, admiring the trees and looking at the grey clouds…
…and wondered whether, in view of the very strong and chilly north wind, a walk up a steep hill was a good idea. I had just decided that it was a really good idea when I got a stroke of luck.
One of the minor deities in charge of the Celestial Department for Making Sure that Old People Don’t Make a Fool of Themselves (SOPPYDATES) sent a short but very savage hailstorm towards me accompanied by very heavy gusts of extra chilly wind.
It didn’t take me long to change my mind and head back towards more sheltered and level paths. To reward my good sense, the minor deities then arranged for some blue sky to arrive and make me feel good about the choice.
It wasn’t long before the sun came out, and sheltered from the cruel wind, I enjoyed a stroll through the woods…
…taking a track which I had not followed before…
…though I stopped when I got to the bottom of this hill and left this to be explored on another day…
…while I dropped back down to the track above the river which I had followed on my last outing.
I had to be careful to look where I was treading as I took that picture of the view up the valley.
I have had some discussion with my Somerset correspondent as to whether the bird in the plum tree in yesterday’s post, which we thought might be a meadow pipit, was in fact a song thrush. As a result, I was interested to see some birds in a field today which looked like meadow pipits to me as they seemed too small to be thrushes.
I was carrying two cameras and took a picture with both of them as the Lumix could see closer but not so clearly as the Nikon.
Perhaps they were thrushes too, I find it hard to tell.
I followed the track round the pheasant hatchery….
…and dropped down to the riverside to enjoy the clear water running over the stones in the river bed.
The minor deities intervened again at this stage, as they thought that I had been out long enough. A smattering of hail was sent down to encourage me to get home without wasting any more time.
I did see the nuthatch on the Castleholm again but it was too far up the tree for me to get a photograph and I didn’t want to hang about on the off chance of a better view in case of more hail.
I got home after a much more pleasant three and a half mile walk than I would have had if I had been battling the winds on the open hill.
I was looking at last year’s posts for this month and saw that we had our first tulip out on the 30th March in 2019. It is going to be a close run thing but as it is going to be cold again tomorrow, I don’t think that these are going to be out by Monday this year.
I will be happy to be proved wrong.
Once I was safely indoors, the sun came out again.
Our resident blackbird stood on our fence to take up his position as non flying bird of the day.