Paying attention

Today’s guest picture comes from my brother Andrew. He finds a lot of well made and convenient wooden bridges on his walks.

After a clear night, we woke to a dry but chilly morning, with a light cloud covering keeping the temperature just above freezing.

The conditions encouraged some birds to visit the feeder after breakfast, and I was pleased to see a siskin, a rare visitor these days.

Other birds flitted about under the feeder . . .

. . . and a couple of coal tits were very active.

On our way to church to sing in the choir, we noted the pair of copper beeches which stand at the entrance to the park. For some reason, they lose and regrow their leaves at different times, although they look as though they are identical trees.

It was Remembrance Sunday today, and we had the pleasure of having the Langholm Town Band in church to play for the hymns at our remembrance service. They were very good.

Because it is not possible to give out hymn books to the congregation at the moment, the words for hymns are shown on the screens which you can see at the front of the church. We had an extra screen today because we had a much larger congregation than usual. Although there were only seven of us in the choir, we sang a hymn as an anthem, so we felt that we had played our part in the service.

We had coffee when we got home, and then I devoted some time to keeping an eye on the bird feeder in between doing the crossword and making some soup for lunch.

For once, the birds were kind enough to turn up while I was watching, and although some gave me a hard stare . . .

. . . others posed for portraits.

I did think about going for a walk between lunch and my afternoon choir, but I received a stiff note from my knees about cruelty to joints. Being a kind and attentive person, I gave them a day off, and confined my outdoor exercise to a stroll round the garden.

If I looked very hard, I could find a flower or two . . .

. . . but I had more fun looking for colour in leaves.

And I looked to the future too.

Unlike me, Mrs Tootlepedal was full of get up and go, and she and went off for a five mile walk round Potholm while I drove to Carlisle to sing with the community choir. She later sent me this picture of a fungus which she met on her way round.

We have been only having hour long sessions so far, but today we agreed to move to an hour and a half from next week, which will be good. A lot of our members are not coming to practices at the moment because either they don’t want to be in a big group, or because they can’t face singing in masks, but our conductor remains indomitably cheerful. I hope that she is rewarded by better turnouts as time goes on. From my point of view, it is good to sing, even with half a choir and a mask on, so I will keep coming.

We are promised a reasonable day tomorrow, and I hope that my knees will be more co-operative so that I can make good use of it.

The flying bird of the day is a chaffinch.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

27 thoughts on “Paying attention

  1. Your birds are absolutely wonderful. I like the Blackbird’s attitude. Glad to see you are singing in church again. We recorded our first “full” choir hymns Wednesday night, masked but in choir formation, for transmission on a large screen during the service. Even with some people abstaining we are quite full as several people have joined during the pandemic. It feels almost like an act of defiance, in spite of everything – we will sing!

      1. There’s a lot of things that are harder to do in masks, so I applaud you for being determined to keep singing and not give up like some people do.

  2. Good to see a variety of birds on your feeders all the tit bird families seem to have taken over our feeders! Good idea to record the colour of autumn foliage in the garden before it all disappears- lovely photos and very interesting to see the interior of your church.

  3. I have enjoyed all the photos and fall colors from your day. In some ways fall seems more colorful and cheerful than spring. Perhaps it is the relief felt after a hot, dry summer. After the spring flowers have passed, I know what is coming shortly.

    The two beech trees are an interesting pair regarding their leaf cycle differences. I wonder what factors are involved? That is a fine photo of them.

  4. The interior of your church is beautiful!

    The changing colours, especially the reds, are so striking. All the fall colours seem more vibrant when set against the other seasonal greys. Lovely.

    1. It is a cotoneaster horizontalis so not quite the usual one. We’re going to try to remember to check whether the beech that loses its leaves first gets them back first in the springtime.

  5. What a lovely interior your church has; and a gallery, too! Since the summer we have been able to enter church and take full part in the service without masks. We even use the hymn books and service books again. We reason that if members of the congregation select their own books and put them back on the shelf they won’t be touched for another week at least and any germs etc. will probably have died by then. We still use hand-sanitiser! Singing with a mask on isn’t as good as singing without one but masked-singing is better than no singing at all.

    1. Your hymn book policy seems very sensible, I must say. Our church is a handsome building but as you can imagine it takes a lot of money to keep it going.

  6. What a lovely wooden bridge. Good to hear you are exercising those vocal chords of yours. Cheers.

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