Today’s guest picture comes from my brother Andrew. He found a picturesque lake to sit beside while having his lunch today.
In spite of the continued absence of Mrs Tootlepedal in the south, the sun shone in Langholm today. Our local weather station recorded just under 30°C for a brief period in the afternoon but it was generally at about 24°, a very pleasant temperature, especially in September.
I couldn’t make quite as much of the day as I would have liked because it was time to produce the monthly newsletter for the Langholm Initiative, and that took up a lot of the morning. The early afternoon was too hot for much outside but I did make occasional forays into the garden.
My first outing was at midday. Just when I think that all the roses are going, another one pops up.
And there are more to come, if the weather holds.
I saw a new fly today. Google thinks that it might be a Liorhyssus hyalinus, but I would be happy if anyone knows better. It seems too far north for it.
A little late burst of campanulas are making a pretty picture but I had to stand in front of them and cast my shadow before I could take the picture.
The sweet peas don’t know when to stop, and the house is filling up with them.
My flower arranging skills are rather basic.
After lunch, I went out to check on the butterflies. There were several to be seen.
I spent some time trying to catch a flying bee leaving the sedum without much success.
I let other cyclists take in the heat of the day as I watched an interesting stage of the Tour of Britain, and then I went out for my own ride while the day cooled down. It was still 80°F when I left.
As there was a light wind blowing from the south, I decided to cycle round my 20 mile Canonbie route by going down straight down to Canonbie first, and then coming back over the hill to Langholm. My thinking was that the route down by the old main road against the wind would be quite sheltered, and the wind would blow me home up the hill.
This worked out very well. I got down to the end of the bypass at an excellent speed, and then he combination of the warmth which made my muscles a bit more elastic than usual, and the helpful wind got me back home much more quickly than I expected. Even going up the hill at Tarcoon . . .
. . . wasn’t the struggle that it often is, though I was happy to stop at the top for the look back.
I was enjoying my cycling so much that I only stopped for a couple of pictures. This one may not look much . . .
. . . but when I see it, I know that there are only three and a half miles to go, and almost all of them downhill.
When I got home, I found that our neighbour Kenny was kindly strimming our side of the dam.
The wooden cage on the right bank is protecting his lupins. Amazingly, they are in flower even at this late time of year.
I was just about to go in when a slightly embarrassed lady came into the garden to say that her son had kicked his football over the hedge and into a very wild part of the garden, and could he possibly have it back. I guddled around in the bushes and found the football. I only gave it back to her on condition that she took some runner beans as well.
I went in and had a cup of tea and then made a last tour of the flowers.
The snapdragons are still full of life . . .
. . . and the dahlias are still covered in insects.
This may now be my favourite dahlia, especially in the evening light.
Mrs Tootlepedal has planted yellow crocosmia round the front lawn and it is doing well.
I am easily mystified by nature so I can’t tell you why the Japanese anemone looks great but doesn’t attract insects . . .
. . . while a rather battered dahlia of much the same colour is fighting them off.
I had a last look at the sky . . .
. . . and went in to have my evening meal.
The flying birds have been very backward about coming forward on these last two sunny days so a very blurry flying butterfly is the best than I can offer today.
Footnote: Mrs Tootlepedal went south to see her mother who was beginning to fail a bit at the age of 105. She and her brother sat with their mother for an hour yesterday afternoon, and in the evening, the old lady passed peacefully away in her sleep, so it was a well timed visit. I will take it as read that readers of this blog will have great sympathy for Mrs Tootlepedal, so please feel no necessity to add a comment.