Today’s guest picture comes from our son Tony and shows a resident of a well established property on the coast at East Wemyss.
Our spell of excellent summer weather continued here today, a fraction cooler to give us more comfort, but still mostly sunny.
We are expecting an important visitor later in the month so Mrs Tootlepedal felt that it would be good to get the gates which should sit at the end of our drive out of the garage and have a look at them. Having looked at them, it was apparent that they needed a bit of TLC, so she set about painting them and by the end of the day, they were in place and looking pretty smart.
While she was working away, I was offering moral support and wandering round the garden, dead heading clippers and camera in hand.
It wasn’t hard to find something to look at as I went round.
A perfect calendula…
…a smiling inula helenium or elfdock…
…a newly out Clematis Jackmanii, with a rich deep colour….
…a hosta, (which I find is a plantain lily and a member of the asparagus family and not the lily family these days)….
…and finally a coreopsis.
We had a very pleasant coffee meeting in the garden with Margaret (Ken was out cycling and Liz was walking), and then Mrs Tootlepedal went back to gate painting and I cooked a tarte tatin. Sadly I had to buy apples to make it, because our apple crop was entirely wiped out by the late frost. It felt a bit like cheating, but either the tarte tatin pan was going to lie unused all year, or it had to be shop bought apples.
After lunch, Mrs Tootlepedal painted the hinges on the gate while I offered more moral support and took more flower pictures…
…and then we went for a walk.
We went through the park and walked along the riverside path. Mrs Tootlepedal is not fond of this path as she thinks that many of the trees along it may be less firmly committed to the ground than would be ideal…
…but we got along it, treading over several very tiny landslips on our way, without being crushed by falling trees.
As we were going especially to let Mrs Tootlepedal see a recent landslip near Skippers Bridge where big trees fell across a road, it is evident that her worries are not groundless.
We crossed over Skippers and walked on past the recent landslip. We met a man who was considering the wall he is building beside a new road.
He told us that he is building the wall himself, although he is not a wall builder to trade. All the stone is sourced from the cutting that was made for the road and he handles the bigger stones with a mini digger. He is going to build the wall on the other side of the road next. We took our hats off to him. It is an amazing piece of work.
We walked on and took the path up through the wood beside Jenny Noble’s Gill. The ancient oaks surrounded by young birch trees are always a delight.
And the track back to Langholm past the Round House is a wonderfully refreshing place on a sunny summer’s day.
I looked around from time to time as we walked and saw innumerable tormentil flowers speckled in the grass.
This is an amazing little flower. It seems to have been flowering for months and you find it everywhere, in woods and on the open hills. It seems to be too small for the sheep to eat so it is sometimes the only flower to be seen on the hillside when sheep are grazing.
There were signs of autumn coming…
…and interesting insects.
When we got home, we walked through the newly painted gates….
…and got our strength back with a slice of tarte tatin…
…and a cup of tea.
I wandered around the garden in the hope of seeing a butterfly or two before the regular sibling Zoom meeting.
I saw insects great and small on a dahlia…
…and finally found a lone peacock butterfly having a late snack on a buddleia.
The lack of butterflies is getting worrying.
The sibling meeting went off on schedule and my London sisters reported that they were very pleased that the temperatures there had finally dropped to a level where they were able to live normally.
I had time for a quick look at the bird feeder after the meeting. There were not many birds to look at though, and the seed in the feeder hardly went down all day. I took pictures of the few that I saw and liked the way that the chaffinch on the feeder was waving to his mate on the fake tree.
I left the birds to it and drove up on to the moor with Mrs Tootlepedal in the hope of seeing interesting raptors and blooming heather. It was one of those days when the light was not quite as good as you hope, there was a complete lack of interesting birds and the heather was not quite out enough to make for a good picture. We didn’t stop long.
On our way home we saw our only flying bird of the day as the visiting helicopter took off from the rugby ground just as we passed.