Fine walking and three zooms

Today’s guest picture comes from our son Tony He took an unwanted old metal watering can away with him when he went home after his visit yesterday, and it has now been repurposed, as they say these days.

We had another of those here and there mornings with occasional light drizzle but there were plenty of dry spells and whenever I could I took my macro lens out into the garden for a peer about.

I didn’t really need the macros to see Lillian Austin looking pretty smart…

…or even to catch the hoverfly on another of her flowers.

But it came in handy when I had a close look at a verbascum and an astilbe.

There is no shortage of bees, butterflies and hoverflies at the moment and I saw a red admiral on the morning buddleia…

…and bees and hoverflies on almost everything else.

I went to the shop on my shopping bicycle and then I went for a walk with Evie and Annie. Evie has really got the hang of walking and we walked out of the garden, across the street and along almost the whole length of the dam before she went on sit down strike. It felt like a privilege to carry her back home after such a great effort.

It had been pretty damp in the garden after breakfast and some flowers took longer to dry out than others…

I had a close look at one of the red poppies near the greenhouse…

…and a moment later found someone else having an even closer look.

Mrs Tootlepedal had a busy morning so we didn’t manage a garden coffee meeting but I was able to get out for another look round with Annie and Evie before lunch.

The heart of an inula helenium held a tiny droplet of water…

…and our snowberry has flowers and berries at the moment.

Next to the snowberry, the mint was attracting attention….

…and a pair of butterflies had both simultaneously deserted the buddleia to bask in the sunshine on the leaves of a philadelphus.

After a very continental lunch with brioche, prosciutto, brie and tomatoes, Mrs Tootlepedal and Annie took Evie for a long walk (and snooze) in her pushchair while I went for a short cycle ride up the main road to Mosspaul and back.

There was possible rain in the forecast and some ferocious looking black clouds about when I left but I rode in the direction of some sunshine…

…and hoped that the black clouds would stay where they were and leave me alone.

This was exactly what happened and I was able to stop at Ewes Church…

…to admire the view….

…and then ride on to the top of the hill at Mosspaul in very pleasant conditions.

They are busy putting new wires on the pylons there.

For some reason, perhaps to do with people having holidays in Scotland and not on Mediterranean beaches, there was a constant stream of cars passing me on the way up the hill, but the trip back down to Langholm was much more peaceful.

Although the black clouds were still lurking about when I got near the town…

…both I and the walkers had the best of the weather. My legs were in a co-operative mood again today and the wind was very light, so I had the added bonus of a semi respectable average speed.

I had time to get changed and watch the the final few kilometres of another exciting stage of the Tour de France before I attended the first of two Zoom meetings. This was our virtual choir practice. A major disadvantage of the virtual rehearsal is that the only singer you listen to is yourself and I tend to sound a bit weedy. Unlike a real rehearsal, I can’t somehow persuade myself that it is me making that fine noise and not the other eighty singers. Still, it is the best we can do at the moment.

It was a lovely afternoon by now and there was a little time to spare after the practice so I went out into the garden and spotted two small tortoiseshell butterflies, one on a sedum…

…and one doing very artistic colour coordinated posing on a French marigold.

I went in and took my only bird feeder picture of the day (and it hadn’t even got to the feeder)…

…before joining in to the second Zoom meeting, this time with our son Alistair, his wife Clare and their daughter Matilda.

Clare and Al were recovering from being a bit poorly during the week (non covid symptoms fortunately) but Matilda was in sparkling form and gave us all a demonstration of gymnastic and dancing skills. Evie was impressed and so were we.

A tasty evening meal of brisket of beef rounded off an excellent day. It was nice to have had some good weather in the afternoon. There was a map on the telly this evening showing what a wet summer we have been having, and we are back to more wet and windy weather tomorrow. Ah well.

There was a pretty sky when we went out into the garden after the meal and a pigeon was taking in some rays…

…possibly the same one who appears in silhouette as the flying bird of the day.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

28 thoughts on “Fine walking and three zooms

  1. The views of sun dappled hills are breathtaking. Butterflies and bees have been busy in your gardens, too. I see one bee has her baskets loaded with orange pollen. When I kept bees, I could roughly tell what they had been visiting by the color of the pollen in the cells on the frames back in the hive.

  2. Some lovely local countryside views and close up insect life today..excellent 👍
    Well I’d had enough of being off the bike,so took a chance and did 5mls on the turbo trainer..we’ll see how I feel tomorrow,.half expecting the worst,but hoping for the best as our Covid scientists often say ☹️

      1. Well I kept it to 5 mls and although it’s no better it hasn’t got any worse either.
        Another course of antibiotics is waiting for collection from the local pharmacy,next step will be an incision which form past experience Is not pleasant.

  3. Wonderful insect photos and gorgeous detail on those as well as on the flower shots. I enjoyed the views from your bike ride – what a lovely day and what an enormous black cloud! I am glad Al and Clare are recovering from being ill and I hope that they will be back to full strength very soon.

  4. The view of the hills and the dark clouds is absolutely beautiful – the ‘lurking’ clouds seem to make the other colours more vibrant. Tony’s repurposed watering can is pretty – I like spots of fairy lights here and there but never get around to installing any!

  5. I like your son’s artistic take on upcycling the watering can . Lots to like in all the photos too – some splendid ‘arty’ shots and great close ups of butterflies , bees and birds!

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