Taking things easy

Today’s guest picture comes from my brother Andrew. He found the lake in Markeaton Park in a very peaceful mood in the late afternoon while on a recent walk.

We woke to a false dawn here. It was lovely when I looked over the roofs of Henry Street out of our back window. . .

. . . but by the time that I had got downstairs, the rosy glow had disappeared and another unrelentingly grey day set in. We have got reasonably high pressure overhead, so at least it was dry and chilly and above freezing.

Either because of my stumble at the bird boxes, or because I pedalled a bit too vigorously yesterday, my knee was quite sore this morning, and I had an even quieter time than usual. I did want to keep my leg moving though, so I made a small excursion into the garden and pointed my camera at things that I saw, including some actual flowers. I wouldn’t say that the garden was ablaze with colour, but they definitely were flowers.

The dead heads have stayed on several of the Japanese anemones . . .

. . . and we are looking forward to spring too. I hope that we get good weather and no late frosts for the azaleas this year.

And as always, there was lichen to look at. Blotches on paving stones don’t look very interesting until the camera peers a little more closely.

Margaret came for coffee and we enjoyed a comfortable chat while I ate all the biscuits.

In spite of an unsuccessful fly through by a sparrowhawk, there were plenty of chaffinches at the feeder today after it left.

Mrs Tootlepedal had been to the butcher, so I had an individual steak pie for my lunch. This made my knee feel a lot better.

Mrs Tootlepedal is going to make new curtains so she needed to go to Carlisle after lunch to find some thread which would properly match the fabric. I asked if she needed any help or advice from me, and when strangely it turned out that she didn’t, I went for a walk.

I chose a dead flat, two and a half mile three bridges route, and went along it very carefully and slowly.

It was rather grey and one of the two white ducks at the Kilngreen stood out from the standard mallards.

Gulls flew past me, possibly in the hope that I might have some food for them in my pocket . . .

. . . and mallards splashed down in the river ahead of me.

As I don’t carry food for ducks and gulls, they were all disappointed.

I pottered up the Lodge Walks and round the pheasant hatchery, and my eye was drawn to trees. It is a good year for lichen on tree trunks . . .

. . . and I liked the colour palette on this fallen branch.

Because I was anxious not to trip over any fallen twigs or branches, I was very pleased to find that the estate has made an excellent job of clearing the riverside path back to the Duchess Bridge . . .

. . . with most of the cut timber taken away already and only a few branches left in neat piles.

I enjoyed the variety of designs in the trunks and branches that I passed.

There is still a bit of work to be done near the Duchess Bridge . . .

. . . and the bridge itself is still closed . . .

. . . both because the parapet is slightly damaged, and because the paths on the other side of the bridge are still badly blocked by fallen trees.

I walked on and crossed the river by the Jubilee Bridge where I found a game a football in progress on the Scholars Field.

I stayed to watch for a while, but there was not a lot of goalmouth excitement so I left when the referee blew for half time.

My knee benefited from the gentle exercise, and I arrived home just as Mrs Tootlepedal returned from Carlisle. We sat down to an early cup of tea, and our enjoyment was enhanced when we found that we still had some French biscuits left from our son Alistair’s Christmas hamper.

There is a promise of a bit of sunshine tomorrow. As I will be at church choir in the morning and the Carlisle Community Choir in the afternoon, I will have to try to squeeze a quick outing in between singing. It always seems to be sunny on choir days.

The flying birds of the day are a pair of the Kilngreen gulls flying in formation.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

31 thoughts on “Taking things easy

  1. The white duck is very pretty, and the gulls are as elegant as always.

    Is it your tin knee that acts up, or the original one? If the latter, does that mean you’re going to be in line for another tin knee? If the former, I hope you have some warranty left on the parts!

    1. It is my genuine knee that is giving me problems. I am hoping by careful exercises to keep it going. Just now it seems to be very difficult to get a knee replacement operation.

  2. False or not, that dawn was beautiful. And so were the flowers. The winter honeysuckle is one I haven’t seen.
    My favorite though, is the azalea bud. It’s a beautiful thing and since I’m working on a post about buds I was very happy to see it.
    You also have some beautiful lichens and fungi in the yard, so you really wouldn’t have to go anywhere to do a blog post. I hope the knee is better though, because I love your landscapes too.

  3. I am sorry your knee is feeling sore, but glad it seems to be responding to gentle exercise. You found plenty of beautiful flowers in the garden, and as well as some interesting lichens. I enjoyed all the photos.

    The feeder here is mainly being visited by Juncos at this time, with a few chickadees, towhees and sparrows. I think we have a few fox sparrows in that group. The juncos are somewhat rude to the chickadees, who seem to be a little more nimble and can easily get out of the way. I have heard the killdeer to the south, a great horned owl now and then, what I think was some kind of hawk.

      1. The juncos far outnumber the other visitors. I put up suet & seed cakes as well, which gives the chickadees a chance to dart in and cling to the cake holder.

  4. Given the tenderness of your knee, I find the action shots of the football match an appropriate admiration of those who do not (yet) have to be concerned about such maladies.

  5. Good to see that even in the depths of winter there is still some colour to be found in the garden.
    Hope your knee recovers after a few days rest.
    It’s strange how falls seem to happen when your in your comfort zone,that’s my experience anyway.
    Being less weight bearing cycling can often be preferable to walking,with your powers of recovery you’ll soon be back in the saddle I’m sure.
    I’m only just recovering from my bad chest after five weeks. You never know I might even risk a short pedal soon.

  6. Great action shots of footballers, chaffinches, gulls and mallards! Lots of lovely lichen too. It’s sad to see all those trees sawn up but I’m sure the wood will be put to good use somewhere.

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