Today’s guest picture comes from my sister Susan. She has got a new phone and took this shot with it and sent it to me. She knows that I like canals.
There were two and a half inches of rain for the week in Mary Jo’s rain gauge when I looked this morning, most of it from yesterday. However, we were far from being underwater when we got up today. The sun was out, the morning was quite warm by recent standards and the surface water had all drained away.
I strolled down to the river to see whether the water was high and found a modest rise in the river level and a day that felt far more like spring the autumn.
Though when I looked in the opposite direction, there was a definite hint of autumn about.
I walked along the river bank…
…and considered that the world was not such a bad place after all.
A walk round the garden when I got home confirmed that feeling.
There were single flowers that caught the eye…
…and multiples too.
The most unusual sight was a very late second flowering stem on a hosta, while the fuchsias are half going over and half powering on, and small poppies and Lillian Austin are not giving up yet.
It was warm and pleasant enough for Margaret to come and join Mrs Tootlepedal for a cup of coffee in the garden and our neighbour Liz dropped by after her morning walk. I had a quick cup of coffee with them too but then, while the coffee meeting continued, I nipped out on my bicycle to make use of the better weather.
I couldn’t go too far because I had a Carlisle Community Choir practice in the afternoon, so I chose an undemanding 34 mile circular ride down to Gretna and back.
There was a fair bit of water in the rivers but not as much as I had expected after the lengthy rain yesterday. This is the little cascade in the Wauchope near the old school.
I crossed the Kirtle Water….
…by this bridge…
…near Waterbeck Church…
…where my great uncle was the minister in the 1930s.
I passed two cows near Gretna Green, one standing and one notwithstanding.
I stopped for another bridge, this time over the Black Sark a little further on…
…and was grateful for the neat set of steps which made getting down to the waterside an easy task. Every bridge should have one of these.
The view from the bridge was almost as good as the view of the bridge.
The migrating geese are back in our region and I chose a route which I hoped would let me see some feeding in the fields. They are noisy birds so I was able to hear them long before I could see them. Unfortunately, they had chosen two fields a good way away from the road that I was on and I couldn’t get a good picture of the hundreds of birds that were there.
It was a lovely day for a pedal and the wind, having blown me down to Gretna, was obliging enough to help me home over the last five miles.
I arrived back in a very sunny mood and had a plate of Mrs Tootlepedal’s leek and potato soup for a late lunch.
I glanced out of the window after my soup and was greeted by a robin posing on one of Mrs Tootlepedal’s garden stakes…
…and a blue tit in the fake tree.
On the feeder itself, goldfinches were in command and I sympathised with the chaffinch in the background who was just passing, having decided that there was no place for it at the table.
I had a shower and a shave so that I was ready for the choir practice and enjoyed some cheerful singing with 40 other choir members on Zoom. It may not be perfect but it is keeping the choir going. Our leader is hoping that the virtual choir performance which members recorded individually might be ready for next week.
After the choir, I had another look out of the window. Gold had been replaced by green.
But the fine weather didn’t seem to have improved their temper at all. There was a lot of grumpiness…
…although being shouted at by siskins is enough to make anyone a bit testy.
Then Mrs Tootlepedal and I took a turn round the garden and did some tidying up before we went back in again.
Last night, to add to the general gloom brought about by the weather, my computer had been misbehaving in a very irritating way, leading among other things to the disappearance of a set of handy macros on the photo editor. I had written these to make producing the two and four panel shots that I use a lot in these posts a one click process. This meant that I had to sit down today and re-write them.
It wasn’t a difficult task but it took me up until it was time to cook some kippers for our evening meal. They were very tasty and this rounded off a very satisfactory day.
The flying birds of the day are some of those geese moving from one field to another.