Today’s guest picture comes from my brother Andrew who passed this municipal work of art, The Rings of Derby, on his walk today. What it signifies is a bit of a mystery.
It was slightly warmer today than recent days in Langholm, but if possible, it was slightly greyer too. As it was still remarkably calm and it wasn’t raining, we weren’t complaining.
Both Mrs Tootlepdal and I devoted the first part of the morning to going into the town looking for this and that. I saw two dippers but only had my phone to record this one below the town bridge.
Our neighbour Liz drew my attention to a fine burst of fungus on an old log in her garden when I got back.
It has appeared very suddenly and surprised her.
Then, after coffee, Mrs Tootlepedal and I went for a walk along the Becks track. I went upstairs to put my walking socks on and noticed that a small group of collared doves was visiting the feeder. They noticed me and flew off leaving just this one for the record.
It was pretty gloomy on the walk and once again we could see clouds clamped on the top of our hills. This time Whita was under a cloud.
Birds both domestic and wild posed for us we went along.
…and a robin hopped about from gate to hedge to gate again until it had made sure that I had got a good shot.
We crossed the Becks Burn and walked back down the road…
…happy to have a peaceful walk in December even if there was not a lot to see on the way, apart from some very pale fungus and some cheerful lichen.
Mrs Tootlepedal had bought me some black pudding for my lunch, and fortified by that, I took a moment to watch the birds at the feeder. There was a good selection about today with a blackbird…
…sparrow, goldfinch, coal tit, and robin.
The robin was hungry.
The forecast had suggested rain in the afternoon, which was why we had gone for our walk in the morning. However, while I was watching the birds it seemed clear enough outside, so I put my cycling gear on and went off in the hope of getting a few dry miles in before the rain came on.
Regular readers won’t be surprised to hear that it started raining almost as soon as I set off, but I wasn’t going to be fooled by that and pressed on.
It turned out to be a good decision as the rain soon stopped and I got an unexpected twenty miles of enjoyable cycling in before it got too dark to be fun.
I wasn’t going to go too far from home though, just in case, so I took a short diversion up the Cleuchfoot road…
…and then found that there was no cloud on the top of Callister when I got there…
Looking over towards the turbines on the new windfarm, I could see that although their blades weren’t turning, their wind direction sensors must have been in action because all fifteen where lined up facing exactly into the light wind which was behind me.
The highlight of the trip was discovering that this landslip, which I photographed just after it had happened in August last year, and which has had traffic lights holding up innocent cyclists ever since then…
…has finally been repaired.
The traffic lights actually disappeared between my outward and return journey. The repair is neat but minimal.
I hope that it works.
It got even gloomier as I cycled home but I have got new lights for my bike and now have two front lights and two rear ones…
…so I am reasonably confident that I should be visible even in these dark afternoons.
A cup of tea and the last slice of the fruity malt loaf was a good reward for taking the exercise. Since the darkness came early, there is nothing left to report about the day except for an enjoyable sibling Zoom and a tasty evening meal of baked eggs in spinach with a cheese sauce.
The poor light made catching a flying bird hard, and this was the best that I could do.