A pedal and a tootle

Today’s guest picture is the third and last from Venetia’s recent walk. As well as the bridge and the lime kiln, she visited this attractive little harbour.

Looking at the forecast a few days ago, it seemed that today would be the best day of the week for a pedal. As it turned out, yesterday was that day, so I was a bit sorry that I hadn’t pedalled yesterday and walked today. It wasn’t that it was a bad day today, just that it was freezing when we got up, and it took the whole morning to get the temperature up to a level which was appropriate for old people pedalling.

We used the morning to go shopping at the Co-op, drink coffee and read the newspapers.

A robin posed for the camera, but before I could collect the camera and point it at the robin, the bird had flown. I watched dunnocks instead.

One pottered about under the feeder giving me a chance to take a couple of shots of it.

I caught a glimpse of a siskin later in the day, but our greenfinches and goldfinches have temporarily (I hope) disappeared, and almost all we are getting is chaffinches. We got them coming and going in a blur today. (The light was not very good this morning.)

A coal tit added a little variety, and it took the trouble to turn round to show me the seed that it had claimed.

After lunch, with the temperature at 5°C, I thought that there would be no danger of icy patches, so I put on as many layers as I could manage, and set off up the Wauchope road. Although it was theoretically 5°C, the weather website accurately told me that it was a ‘feels like 2°C day’ and I was glad to be well protected. I was even more glad of this when I rode into an outbreak of sleety rain. It didn’t take me long to revise my journey plans from going ten miles to Paddockhole and back to going three miles to Wauchope Schoolhouse and back.

However, a chink of light in the west gave me the hope that this might be a passing shower rather than the more persistent rain forecast for later, and by the time that I had got back to Langholm, the rain had stopped. I kept going and went back up the road to Wauchope Schoolhouse and back twice more, the first time in some lovely and unexpected low sunshine.

I saw this tree at Wauchope Schoolhouse three times, once in the rain, once in the sun . . .

. . . and once in shadow after the sun had gone down during my third tour.

I look upon this twenty mile bike ride as being my version of going to the gym, and I do it fairly frequently when the weather is unfriendly in the winter months. It gives me the option of cutting the ride short if the weather gets too nasty. Just having that option is usually enough to keep me going for the three laps. It has the advantage of being a pretty flat ride, and having no more than three and a bit miles of uphill before getting a rest with three and a bit miles of downhill back to the town.

I had a look round the garden when I got home, but the light had gone, and I had to use the flash to pick out a viburnum. At least nature had put some Christmas decorations up.

In spite of wearing two pairs of gloves and socks, I needed a shower when I got in to get my extremities warmed up.

In the evening, Sue, Susan and Jenny arrived, and we had a very pleasant time paying through some of the mound of recorder music that we have acquired. We are going to try to sort it into piles of ‘enjoyed it, play again’, ‘enjoyed it, needs practice’, ‘quite enjoyed it, might try it again’, and ‘didn’t enjoy that very much, don’t keep’. As we have ten boxes of quartets and we played about one half of one box tonight, this project will keep us occupied for some time.

We rounded off the session with tea and chocolate biscuits with Mrs Tootlepedal.

The flying bird of the day is a chaffinch.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

25 thoughts on “A pedal and a tootle

  1. Between light snowstorms I’m still picking up leaves at work and some days I feel like I’ve been chilled right to the bones, so I know why you needed that hot shower. It’s possible to feel like you’ll never be warm again.
    I liked the low sun on the countryside.
    It’s nice to see flowers in December no matter what they are.

    1. I see that I had mislabelled viburnum as verbascum. I have corrected the post now. The low sun is good when it is behind you, but a bit of a pain to cycle or walk into.

      1. Except that the omicron variation looks as though it might put paid to any idea of concerts for a while. It is getting out of hand here.

  2. Hi tootlepedal, Great to see you’re tootling and pedalling, despite the chilly weather. I seem to be out of kilter, currently. Yesterday, I started to go through the backlog of your posts, which I hadn’t read since mid November, only to empty my email box completely. These short fat stubby Welsh fingers have a lot to answer for. Probably accounts for my inadequacies as a bike mechanic as well. I’ve had to give up on my solo effort to convert my Pioneer into SwytchBike mode. I have found a bike mechanic who will do the job for me. Merthyr Bike Shop (Chris) is picking up my Pioneer tomorrow, along with the conversion kit gubbins. Now, where did my emails go? Cheers.

    1. I hope that Chris does a good job and that you are soon speeding about the countryside. How is your knee? Is it bending well?

      I haven’t just lost emails, I have lost a whole email address.

      1. Fingers crossed, I waved adieu to my Pioneer earlier today, hoping to have it back by next Friday. Chris seems to know what he’s talking about, just a matter of patience now. My knee is still only capable of a limited bend, but much easier to walk now. Cheers.

  3. That was a good way to get exercise on a chilly day.
    Glad you had some enjoyable music making – you are getting very organized with the sorting out.

  4. I enjoyed all your wintry day photos. The dunnocks always seem such serious little birds.

    The weather has grown colder and here. We may possibly see snow by the end of next week.

  5. Good to read that you had a pedal on such a cold day( hope you had your liner socks on!) and then enjoyed your tootle. I’ve mentioned before that ‘old’ posts of yours appear below the present one. Today is another Tootle and Pedal December 2017! They show a Kelpie photo and a dunnock photo.

    1. I did have two pairs of socks on, with Sealskinz on top. You don’t want to look at old posts. They tend to be exactly the same as new posts because I live a very humdrum life. 🙂

      1. Making an interesting story out of daily life adds value to the lives of everyone who leads a daily life. That’s my theory, anyway, and you do a great job of it.

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