A windmill on my mind

Today’s guest picture comes from our friend Gavin. He found the road along the river just past Skippers Bridge thoroughly blocked this morning.

We had had another inch of rain overnight so perhaps this collapse was not entirely unexpected. Fallen trees and landslips seem to have become quite common round here. Gavin says that the bank in the picture above looks pretty unstable so it may not be too easy to open the road quickly.

We had a quiet morning a home as we were both a bit tired and the weather was still very gloomy, but I did manage a trip to the corner shop (on my shopping bike) and a walk round the garden when things had dried up a bit.

Two zinnias are defying the rain and continuing to develop…

…and there were pale delights to be seen in the form of a poppy in a brief glint of sunshine…

….and an astrantia.

I was expecting to find things looking a little worse for wear after the overnight rain, but the dahlias and The Wren had held up well….

…while the begonias in the chimney pot looked amazing.

I checked on the red buddleia and was very happy to find that a butterfly had landed there. This red admiral looked rather battered though….

…and in the vegetable garden, the big clover was well past its best.

The morning had been so relaxed that when I finally made myself a cup of coffee, I found that it was lunchtime.

A glance at the forecast suggested that it might or might not be possible to avoid any showers, but my mouth wasn’t feeling too bad after yesterday’s visit to the dentist so I went out for a cycle ride, quite expecting to cut it short and scurry home when any rain came on.

Rain did come on when I was a few miles out of town but a look at the sky told me that it might be just be the very edge of a passing shower and that if I kept going, I should get through it quite quickly. I have made this sort of calculation before and got thoroughly soaked but on this occasion, I was lucky. The rain had stopped by the time that I got to the top of Callister.

I considered my options.

On our way back from the dentist yesterday, we had seen the first turbine tower of the new windfarm at Solwaybank, just over the hill from Callister. I decided to get a better look at it and headed on down the hill and then took the back roads that lead past the windfarm. I was a bit nervous as I have not cycled along them for a while and the surface has been terrible in places in the past.

I passed a very contented bull at the bottom of the hill…

…crossed the bridge at Linnbridgeford…

…and found that the backs roads had all been resurfaced and were in good condition.

I found an interesting sheep to look at when I got to the Solwaybank road….

…and soon found myself with an excellent view of the first turbine tower of the new windfarm, complete with very fancy crane.

The wires in the picture above, are the connections to the nearby windfarm at Ewe Hill…

…and it will be interesting to see if the new windfarm can connect to them too. I hope it can, because we already have quite enough wires spoiling views for photographers.

I cycled along the wooded section of road past Solwaybank House…

…and was very happy to find that it had been very smoothly resurfaced and was in perfect cycling condition.

At the entrance to the windfarm itself…

…I wondered if they had enough notices up. I felt that they had missed a chance as they could easily have had another notice up saying how important it was to read all the notices.

When I got out into open country again…

…the roads were still well surfaced and the whole ride was a great pleasure.

With five miles to go, I joined the familiar road which I use on my Canonbie circuit, and looking up at the Craig wind turbines, I wondered if I was going to get wet before I got home….

…but I was lucky, and I even had time to stop to look at some heather just coming into flower…

…and still get home dry after 20 very enjoyable miles.

Mrs Tootlepedal had not been idle while I was out and although she had been driven out of the garden by rain, she had had time to give her chickens a haircut.

When I got in, I had time to look at the birds for a while.

There were a lot of greenfinches about today, on occasions sharing with chaffinches….

…and sometimes arguing with a redpoll….

…who was quite capable of standing up for himself.

After I had had a shower, we went out into the garden to dig up a main crop potato. Mrs Tootlepedal was quite satisfied with four and a half pounds of good clean potatoes from one plant.

We had a video call with our granddaughter Evie and her mother Annie, and then a second helping of the butcher’s steak pie with vegetables from the garden finished off a quietly enjoyable day. It helped that it was reasonably warm, even if the sun didn’t shine.

The flying bird of the day is a slightly out of focus greenfinch.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

35 thoughts on “A windmill on my mind

  1. The dahlia with tubular petals is amazing. I’ve never seen one like it.
    It was nice to see the heather. I don’t see it here anymore, even in gardens.
    I like Mrs. T.s chickens. I’ve always wanted to do something like that but have never had the chance.

  2. The picture of the cones in the header is beautiful! Lots of interesting photos on your ride today, but the two that stand out for me are the sheep with the crazy horns, and the very inviting road past Solwaybank House.

  3. seems you got most of the rain then – we only had a little sprinkle – we were expecting more but it never arrived. Was the dentist able to do anything or just charge you for talking to you?

  4. Glad there was no car under that downed tree! The downed tree over the road reminded me of winters here, when we get most of our rain. The banks can be quite unstable and in places, rockslides are common, too. Some areas have heavy metal netting over the rocky embankment.

    Your flowers are always a treat, no matter what the weather. I’ll gladly take some of your rain if you can send it my way. Upper 90s, hot and sunny, are in the forecast for here today. I’m off to water the garden early as I did not get it done last night.

  5. The chicken looks lovely after its hair trim and the little chick too..I hadn’t noticed the little one before! The bull looks very pensive and probably wondering where you were going and the sheep has the strangest horns ever! Seems soon to see the heather…time seemed to have zoomed by this year!

    1. The children in a normal year carry heather besoms in a parade on the Common Riding morning but in recent years it has been harder and harder to find heather in bloom so you are right. No parade this year.

  6. The bridge at Linnbridgeford looks inviting. Glad your roads have been resurfaced, reopening cycling possibilities. And I’m glad you did not get wet. The garden flower photos are simply amazing.

    1. It is a pretty bridge, I agree. The council has done quite well at keeping our roads in reasonable condition this year. We didn’t have a hard winter which helped.

  7. The horns on that sheep are quite impressive. Then again so is that turbine tower. About a decade ago, I encountered one of the turbine blades being hauled out to the highway. They are quite impressive in size.

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