Today’s guest picture was kindly sent to me from America by blog reader Gunta. Knowing that I like bridges, she sent me this picture of one of her Oregon examples. It is in Newport, Oregon crossing Yaquina Bay as one travels along the Oregon coast highway.
Our spell of rather cool weather continued today. The rain had stopped but to make up for that, a strong wind was blowing so it didn’t feel much like summer when we were out in the garden.
We had our weekly WhatsApp chat with our granddaughter Matilda and her father Alistair at coffee time and then went out to do some gardening.
I mowed the greenhouse grass, the drying green and the front lawn and then did some shredding as Mrs Tootlepedal was clearing away a vast quantity of ivy from the rowan tree beside the compost bins.
I had time for a look at the flowers before lunch.
Pink peonies are coming out…
…and a pretty iris has arrived as the aquilegias are thinking of leaving.
When the sun shone, it felt quite cheerful and the flowers smiled at me.
After lunch, I took some time to watch the birds. I was surprised to see a pigeon had mastered the art of standing on the tray to get at the seed feeder.
The rooks do this but I hadn’t seen a pigeon try it before. The small birds were rather indignant so I went out and shooed the pigeon away. The small birds were grateful.
The theme of the afternoon was looking.
Everyone was seeking something.
But not always finding it, like this young sparrow hoping for food.
Or this chaffinch who found a dusty welcome.
A goldfinch won the prize for the most elegant searcher.
I left the birds to it and went for a walk, while Mrs Tootlepedal did some computer work for her community land purchase group.
If I had stuck to my lockdown schedule, it should have been a cycling day as I had had a walk yesterday but with heavy and frequent gusts, the wind made cycling unattractive.
I set off up the path beside the park wall. We may not have summer weather but we certainly have got lush summer growth.
I was a bit more interested in taking some vigorous exercise rather than I was in taking pictures after a quiet day yesterday, so I pushed on up the track to the top of Warbla almost without stopping. I say that I pushed on, but it might be more accurate to say that I was pushed on as the strong wind was right behind me and I don’t think that the walk to the top of Warbla has ever been easier.
The morning sun had disappeared and the light was very flat when I looked at the view below…
..so I thought that some foreground interest would be a good idea…
…like the only tree on this part of the hill.
You get good views from Warbla and I was able to look across the town to see the walk along the ridge to Potholm Hill that I had done three weeks ago.
I could also see the new path that I had walked along the side of the hill a week ago.
It was too windy to hang about at the top of the hill so I continued down the other side of the hill…
…taking in the last view over the town before descending into the valley.
I was pleased to get out of the wind and swapped looking at views for looking at things beside the track as I walked back to the town by way of the Kernigal wood.
It looks as though there will be a good crop of wild raspberries this year.
I would like to be able to identify the little yellow flowers and the tiny white moth that I saw but if I ever knew what they are, I have forgotten. On the other hand I can recognise ajuga and for some reason the track up the hill towards the woods was lined with it for about a hundred yards.
The track down through the woods was a different thing altogether. It has been made by mountain bikers so that they can whizz down through the trees at a frightening speed.
It has jumps and berms and sudden dips and rises that make the hair on the back of my neck stand up just walking over them.
I got down safely though, making full use of my walking poles and was grateful that no cyclists were using the track.
Once on the flatter ground, I had leisure to check out the sloes…
…which are looking promising for the gin drinkers.
Once again the paths were showing that it is summer.
When I got back to the park after walking along the river, I found that the grounds maintenance crew had been tidying up the path edges.
Once home, I found that having missed her morning coffee meeting with our neighbours, Mrs Tootlepedal was enjoying afternoon tea in the garden with Margaret instead. I sat and chatted for a while but it was beginning to get a bit chilly so we decided that indoor life was the best thing and ended the party.
Once inside, I relapsed into peaceful indolence, only stirring myself to Zoom with my siblings and eat the excellent meal that Mrs Tootlepedal cooked.
The flying bird of the day is a goldfinch.