More sun, more breeze

Today’s guest picture comes from sunny East Wemyss. Our son Tony took this nice photograph of one of his dogs this afternoon.

We had another fine day here, but we had to wait for a little unexpected rain at breakfast time to clear away before the good times rolled in.

The shock of the rain, natural indolence and a slight reluctance to get going brought on by looking at the speed of the clouds scudding across the sky kept me off my bike until midday.

I looked at the birds to give myself another excuse not to go anywhere. The usual customers were around…

…but a greenfinch arrived and weighed up the options.

Another one leapt straight into action…

…and claimed a place at the table.

It was too nice a day not to bicycle though, so in the end I did get going.

It was quite a battle up hill and into the wind for the first six miles but I finally got to the top of Callister. I found some startling works in progress at Falford when I got down to the other side of the hill.

They seem to be erecting a large pipe bridge over the Kirtle Water. I shall be interested to see what develops.

I stopped a couple of miles further on to take a picture of the Hotts Burn…

…which meets the Kirtle Water…

…just in time to flow under this bridge, the Hotts Burn coming in from the left and the Kirtle Water from the right.

To my left, I could see the spire of Waterbeck Church and some rather brutally pollarded trees.

I cycled on past some gorse bushes which are usually full of flowers at this time of year. I didn’t take a picture as there were only a few rather bedraggled flowers. They have not enjoyed the long cold spell.

The quiet back roads were unusually busy today, with tractors rushing in all directions as farmers made use of the good weather. I managed to pass and be passed by them all safely and made better progress once the wind was no longer in my face. I didn’t stop to take may pictures for some reason but a large old house, mostly hidden behind trees, caught my eye near Kirtlebridge.

I kept my camera in my pocket after that, and put all my efforts into trying to improve my average speed after taking an hour to do the first ten miles. I made a circular tour, coming home through Glenzier and totted up 31 miles which was pleasing, though my average speed remained very mediocre. I just haven’t got the heart to battle into the wind any more and and I try to enjoy going at a more sedate speed than former years. On the plus side, it gives me time to think about stuff and I am expecting my plans for the comprehensive reform of British company law to be taken up enthusiastically by the government.

Snowdrops and crocuses welcomed me home…

…as did Mrs Tootlepedal. She had been busy at her drive project while I was cycling and I arrived in perfect time to help drop the latest slab into position.

Then I put it to the test by driving over it on my way to do some shopping. This was my first visit to a shop since the outbreak of cases in Langholm some weeks ago. Since then we have been tested and vaccinated. The vaccination was three weeks ago, so I relied on the protection that that should give me, but I put on a double mask as well.

I put the shopping away when I got home and went for a quick walk round the short three bridges route in some lovely evening sunshine. Instead of a dipper at the Kirk Brig, I saw a pair of reflective ducks.

I was hoping to see oystercatchers again and there was larger flock of about twenty birds on the side of the Esk today…

…but they were not standing in the sunshine which was disappointing.

I noticed that the recent rain had managed to get the river to rise enough to wash away the pile of trees and branches that had piled up under the town bridge.

At the Kikngreen, someone put down some food for the gulls and caused a commotion.

If I had had my bird camera with me, I would have been spoiled for choice for a flying bird of the day!

As it was, I dodged out of the way and walked on.

The sun was catching the tops of the pine trees on the Castleholm…

…and in one place, it caught some trunks as well.

Above me, the moon was out in the very clear blue sky and I put the zoom lens on the Lumix to ‘full stretch’ and pointed and shot. (The picture is uncropped)

By coincidence, the last time we had a clear blue sky and a moon visible in the afternoon was almost exactly a month ago. I took this shot on 23rd January. (I cropped this one a bit)

As you can see, the sky was a bit clearer today than it was then.

It was getting a bit chilly as the light faded, so I bustled on home and just had time for a cup of tea and a slice of bread and plum jam before our regular Zoom meeting with my siblings.

The forecast is offering us two days of rain to come so it was a good thing that both Mrs Tootlepedal and I made good use of these past two fine days.

The flying bird of the day is a female chaffinch nicely toning in with the subdued background.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

39 thoughts on “More sun, more breeze

  1. Looks like a beautiful sunny day there today in Scotland; I enjoyed seeing the sun in those photos. We are having a windy and rainy day here. It’s quite soggy out today.

  2. I was going to pick put a picture or two that I particularly liked, but it too tricky today; they’re all winners and Mrs T’s paving is looking very professional. It must have felt good to do “proper shopping” again!

  3. I’m glad to read you and Mrs T got your first round of the vaccine. I’m going for my second shot tomorrow morning and am also looking forward to going into a shop again.

  4. I am not surprised you struggle into the wind with such weighty thoughts. Is Zen cycling the answer? Great picture of the moon, last evening I was able to look at it through a telescope, what a fabulous site on a clear night. Keep pedalling. Cheers.

      1. My youngest son has one, but he has rarely used it. Laziness is the problem, by the time it’s set up etc. They should be like bikes, just point it and go, says I, sat in the conservatory listening to very heavy rainfall lol.

      2. The one I had the view of the moon on, is my neighbour’s. Fascinating item, it has an electronic sky navigating system, you just point it at a star and it will give you the name of that star, incredible, it even got the moon right lol. Much rather be on my bike,.

  5. Such a lovely little dog with a crown of clouds too- must be living in the sunshine state of Scotland that makes him so happy! Good to see your blue skies, spring flowers and more oyster catchers. Great photo of the moon with the craters showing so well and all in that blue sky. Keep day dreaming your plans for the world- I’ve gone one step further and even have conversations with the powers that be !!

  6. I very much enjoy your shot of Waterbeck Church, peeking up from the field. The rickety fence under the bridge in your header is very appealing as well. Is there such a thing as a water-less beck?

  7. Double masking is recommended here, too. I “think about stuff” while gardening.

    I think I’ll be quite nervous when we return to shopping. It has been almost a year since our last shopping trip. I had to go to hospital for a little emergency a couple of days ago and was awfully glad I had probably eighty five percent immunity from my first Covid jab two weeks ago.

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