Choir, no choir, extra choir

Today’s guest picture comes from our son Alastair. He spotted a fine Halloween rainbow in Edinburgh this afternoon.

After more overnight rain, we woke to another grey and rainy morning here.

We walked to church in the dry, but we had to scuttle back home with our coats buttoned up as it was raining heavily after the service. The service was a bit disjointed, and there was nothing very interesting for the choir to sing, so it was disappointing that my afternoon choir in Carlisle had been cancelled because of worries about the travel conditions in the continuing bad weather.

After coffee, I checked on the birds and found two goldfinches back again. They had got things straight today.

A gap in the rain appeared, and I seized the opportunity to go for a short walk along the track to the Becks Burn. There was plenty of autumn colour still surviving after the many rain showers, both beside the track . .

. . . and across the valley.

There was plenty of food for birds out here too, with hips and crab apples waiting to be eaten.

And there was a lot of fungus on and around tree stumps before I crossed the burn.

I crossed the burn and walked down the road towards the Auld Stane Brig.

The season has caught up with some trees . . .

. . . and for a moment it felt quite wintery . . .

. . . but only for a moment. Autumn soon reasserted itself.

I passed more fungus on my way down to join the Wauchope road.

Because the path through the woods from the Auld Stane Brig back to Langholm is closed, I went straight back to town by the road . . .

. . . pausing to enjoy the warm welcome which you get when you come round Pool Corner on an autumn afternoon.

I got home in the nick of time, just before the next rain shower started.

Before I went in, I spotted a most unseasonable poppy beside the dam and no less than three lilies in a heap in the garden.

Mrs Tootlepedal had made a very nourishing ham broth for lunch, and as she enhanced it with croutons, I felt very content after lunch in spite of having no choir to enjoy. We went shopping instead. More raspberries had hopped into my shopping basket, and I made some more raspberry jam when we got back. I eat yoghurt for the good of my health, but I don’t much like the taste, so quite a lot of raspberry jam goes into making the yoghurt palatable. I realize that this does not give me top marks for healthy eating, but it certainly gets top marks for a delicious flavour. And it requires a steady supply of fresh jam.

I had another look at the birds when the jam had been put into pots.

There was action at the feeder . . .

. . . with spectators looking on.

The light faded an hour earlier today, and it was dark when the time came to go back to church for an additional evening service. This was a special service to provide comfort for people mourning the loss of family and friends, a new idea from the minister. It was a short but touching event, and gave the choir some good singing to do, with an extra encouragement to do it as well as possible. We did our best, and as a bonus, it wasn’t raining when we walked home.

We are going to start weekly church choir practices with some additional members from the Langholm Community Choir. It hasn’t restarted after the pandemic lockdowns. A small Christmas concert may be possible if enough people turn up, and that will be quite exciting. With four dark months to come, a bit of music brings some welcome light in the gloom.

My memory is not always quite as crisp as I would like, and when I wrote in yesterday’s post that I idled the morning away, I managed to forget that I had found a moment to cut the front hedge . . .

. . . and another to top up the sieved compost bin . . .

. . . so I hadn’t entirely wasted my time.

The flying bird of the day is a chaffinch throwing out a challenge.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

29 thoughts on “Choir, no choir, extra choir

  1. Interesting about your special service. My neighbour, who lost her husband not so long ago, was telling me this morning that she had been invited to a similar service at our local parish church this afternoon. Presumably because it’s the nearest Sunday to All Souls’ Day. (Hallowe’en in fact.)

  2. You’ve got some nice color there this year and it looks like it might hold for a while.
    The stargazer lilies were nice to see. Once I retire I’m going to plant more of them. I’ll have more time to pick the beetles off them then.
    I love raspberry yogurt too but I buy it pre-berried. It tastes great and has only 70 calories per container.

    1. I fear that when I put my home made jam into mine, it might produce a few more calories than that. I won’t think about that when I eat it..

      We don’t seem to be troubled by beetles on our lilies.

  3. I prefer flavoured yogurt, too. I sometimes add a spoonful of honey to plain yogurt and that is very pleasant. You saw some nice autumn colour on your walk and I love the greenfinch and bluetit portraits.

  4. I enjoyed all these beautiful autumn photos. That stargazer lily is quite exceptional with its continued blooms.

    I was able to get more daffodils in today. Many more to go. 🙂

  5. The blue tit portrait is particularly attractive – although I enjoy the beautiful blend of colours you have shown us in the scenery too.

  6. Like Anne I enjoyed the blue tit portrait. Sorry about the missed opportunities to sing, glad though that the evening service provided what had been lacking. Mary and I were at a similar service with excellent music from our choir.

  7. Amazing flying bird of the day and the Greenfinch is beautiful too.
    Since I started making my own yogurt I generally use it on top of my oatmeal which is sweetened with maple syrup and whatever fruit I throw into it so I guess that qualifies as dressed up yogurt.
    I highly recommend the regular choir practice which we have been doing now for over a month. We have two days blocked out for our holiday concert which I guess means we will be singing in the sanctuary on both days with limited congregation attendance. We are such a large choir so this is still hard to imagine but I suppose as the date grows nearer…so will the reality.

    1. I hope that all your arrangements go to plan. Our situation seems rather unstable to me and I have no great faith that anything will happen as hoped.

      I have a little honey on my morning porridge which is tasty but not as healthy as it should be.

      1. I hope your choir situation improves… As for my breakfast, it probably sounds healthier than it actually is. 🙂

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