Shorter and duller

Today’s guest picture is yesterday’s sunset from East Wemyss. Our son Tony sends us these just to make us envious. He succeeds.

We had another fairly chilly, fairly grey day here today, but it wasn’t foggy and it wasn’t freezing so we didn’t complain.

I walked up to have coffee with Sandy, and found him putting up with his currently limited life stoically. If anyone needs help with this, between us we have sorted out what needs to be done to make the world a better place. We would be happy to share our thoughts with any national leader who hasn’t got a clue himself or herself.

I came home, delivered some Archive Group stuff to Nancy, cycled round to the shop, posted a birthday card, did the crossword and peered through the gloomy light to see if there were any birds on the feeder.

Not many, was the answer.

I had a look at the fungus that Mrs Tootlepedal had spotted in the garden yesterday. It is very small and it is hard to get a good picture of it.

I will try again again.

After lunch, I went out for a short and slow cycle ride round the Solwaybank windfarm loop. Like yesterday, there was a brisk wind blowing, but unlike yesterday, there was no sunshine to take the edge off the chilly breeze.

I stopped to take a picture of the Relief Church at Kirtleton, one of many churches that are now private houses.

I was pleased to turn for home after eight miles into the wind, but the poor light meant that I didn’t stop for many pictures. This view looks back down towards Gretna and the long hill that I struggled up on yesterday’s ride.

It was an odd day, because it was quite clear, and you can see the English hills a good distance away in the background of the picture above. The clouds were high and it didn’t feel gloomy, but the camera doesn’t lie when it comes to light. I had to boost the image quite a lot in the photo editor to get it to look anything else but pitch dark.

The road patchers had been out, and they had filled a carefully curated collection of potholes while leaving dozens of others to catch out the unwary cyclist.

In a couple of places, they had surfaced the whole width of the road but only for a few yards at a time.

Compared to yesterday’s ride, the light was very dull indeed . . .

. . . and I was happy to get home and out of the cold wind. Mrs Tootlepedal had been out in the shelter of the garden doing useful things while I was pedalling, and she came in too when I got home.

I had noticed some rose hips peering over our hedge when I walked up to Sandy’s in the morning, so I took a picture of them before I went in . . .

. . . but we got a much more colourful treat later on. Kathryn, of ‘Flowers by Kathryn’, delivered the third monthly set of Mrs Tootlepedal’s birthday bouquets.

Two more treats to come.

I had a curious experience in the evening. In response to letter from the government, I had agreed to do a telephone survey about home insulation. The telephone rang on time and after twenty minutes of questions which had nothing to do with home insulation, the interviewer thanked me kindly, and said that this was the end of the interview. When I said that I had only taken part in the survey because it was about home insulation, he told me that half of the people questioned were being asked about home insulation and the other half weren’t. He didn’t say why.

It is occurrences of this nature that lead people to think that there is a conspiracy going on.

The flying bird of the day is even duller than the day was.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

38 thoughts on “Shorter and duller

  1. I’m tempted but refrain from commenting on a particular national leader who could do with your and Sandy’s advice. As for that telephone survey, one kniows about control groups, but the need for one for that subject is difficult to fathom

  2. Your road pavers aren’t much different than ours.
    The monthly birthday flowers are an excellent idea, especially through winter. I’m going to have to look into it here.
    The light might have been dull but the scenery wasn’t.

    1. You might think that it would make sense to mend all the potholes while the men were out and about without their tar, rather than making frequent visits to mend some of them at a time. I spoke to a road mender and that was what he had recommended the council to do but the system just won’t allow it, although it would save money in the long run.

      1. Here they have a crew come along and dig holes in all the new pavement to uncover all the water shutoffs and other utility access points that were paved over, but in the end I think it is the same system that is in place there in Scotland.

  3. What lovely flowers – and sunset too.
    Most odd about the survey – you were very patient to reply to so many off the subject questions.

    1. I think that they were probably taking the chance to see what proportion of the population is going to be bankrupted by the coming huge rise in gas and electricity prices.

  4. That was a very off telephone survey. I am sure you and Sandy have a better plan for things, if only you can get someone to listen. πŸ™‚

    I am curious about these old stone churches converted to houses. How many of these come with their own cemeteries, or are those excluded from the property sale somehow and maintained separately? I would think one would not be allowed to own a cemetery.

  5. Thankfully your son’s photo of East Wemyss together with the photo of the beautiful bouquet of flowers have brightened the day! They both have the same palette of colour which is why I like them so much.

  6. So. Let us know when you and Sandy have everything put to right. Perhaps we’ll all be able to leave the bunkers.

    ​Can’t say I’d be tempted to live in the Relief Church. Not so much in a cold, rather damp climate. ​

    ​I think that we have seen that same interesting pattern of patchwork pothole repairs ​​on our side of the globe. I’m hoping you’ll add your conspiracy theory to discussions with Sandy.​​

    ​Mrs T’s Bouquet is perfectly delightful. Thanks for sharing it.

    1. I am very pleased to find out that inefficient pothole repairs are an international phenomenon. I thought that we were uniquely incompetent here but it appears that this is not so.

      1. My observation of your corner of the world is that you are most definitely not uniquely incompetent. I might be uniquely qualified to say so having lived for bits of time in a good many parts of this vast land. From Atlantic to Pacific and bits in between.

        On the bright side… the potholes tend to keep the tourist traffic down to a dull roar. πŸ˜‰

  7. Thanks for the post Tom. Comment Re national leaders, I feel you make be able to choose any one you like and you will find they are clueless, based on the news from your side of the pond. Telephone survey. You became 50% of the two people interviewed who had no views on home insulation. Statistics…. Bah. πŸ˜‚

  8. I hang up on requests like this without answering. I’m afraid they are a scheme to spy on me. What a wonderful dwelling is this old church!

  9. So you were part of the control group that had questions other than those about home insulation posed to them? You have much more tolerance for this sort of thing than I do. But I sometimes wonder if not having a land line anymore, with all calls being screened by my cell phone, the cell phone isn’t just continually spying on me anyway. Kudos to Mrs. T’s bouquet.

  10. What an odd survey. By the way, I am reading backwards, and forgot to comment in a later post how pleased I was when Sandy was able to walk to your place. I also forgot to comment on a bit of exciting compost turning. πŸ™‚

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