Singing in the sun

Today’s guest picture comes from Elaine, my correspondent on the north east coast of England. It shows a very impressive life boat and mover at Seahouses, purchased with public donations. Elaine tells me that it cost £3 million.

The end of our warm and sunny spell of weather is in sight, so we made sure that we made use of another sunny day today.

Time was spent in the garden in the morning doing things like weeding, spreading muck on vegetable beds, and sieving compost. We did find time for coffee too, and I took a moment to watch the birds.

With the feeder in its new place, it takes time for the sun to get round to it, so although the garden was in sunshine, the birds were in shade.

I also took time out from being useful to look for new flowers. I found a bergenia . . .

. . . and a sign that the tulips are on their way.

As the temperatures are going to go down sharply in the middle of next week, it might not be wise for the tulips to open up too soon though. And a check on the small number of tadpoles in the pond . . .

. . . gives rise to a doubt that they will be developed enough to survive freezing mornings. Fingers are firmly crossed.

Some magnolia flowers are out, but a bee was having a hard time finding one that was open.

I had a look after coffee to see if the sun had got round to the feeder.

It had.

After lunch, we went for a short three bridges walk, before I went off to Carlisle for my choir.

We walked along the Esk and passed a gull near the bank . . .

. . . and a wagtail on a rock in the middle of the river . . .

. . . as well as a host of daffodils under the waterside trees.

There were a lot of visitors parked at the Kiulngreen, also enjoying the sunny afternoon, but they had not disturbed a pair of goosanders at the meeting of the waters.

The female has a very striking haircut but the male is good looking in his way too.

There were more daffodils at the Sawmill Brig.

Just over the bridge, we saw the first pussy willow of the year.

On the Castleholm, preparations for the race meeting at Easter are progressing.

I hope to be at the meeting to photograph the racing.

When we got home, I found that the warmth had brought out several more magnolia flowers and the bush is looking quite cheerful.

It was a lovely drive to Carlisle in the sunshine, but perhaps the good weather might explain a rather thin turnout of singers at the choir. The fact that it was Mothering Sunday might have played a part too. The rather high rate of Covid cases could also have contributed. Whatever the reason, our substitute conductor must have been a bit disappointed, but he took us as he found us, worked us hard and we had a really good sing.

Mrs Tootlepedal had cooked a topside of beef casserole while I was out singing, so I had a good meal to round the day off.

The flying bird of the day is a redpoll.

Footnote: surprisingly after a couple of good walks this week, my feet are still in very good condition. However, I have walked and cycled 450 miles this month, so the rest of me is feeling just a bit part worn, and this may explain the rather skimpy post today.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

23 thoughts on “Singing in the sun

  1. Re your gpotd, i am a great fan of the tv programme, ‘Saving Lives at Sea’. I guess it’s others, who, with or without the quotes, are the same, who raised that extraordinary amount of money.

    1. Elaine says that the lifeboat was needed to speed up the time taken to get to rescues at Lindisfarne so perhaps people could easily see that there was a need for it.

  2. A beautiful spring day there Your goosanders look like a striking pair.

    The tadpoles are coming along nicely and look to be almost free of their egg jelly keeping them at the surface. If the weather holds just long enough and they wriggle free, they may be able to survive.

  3. Not a skimpy post at all- amazes me you have the energy for anything after 450 miles this month! Good to see all the birds on water and on land and the lovely magnolia showing off her beautiful flowers. Really hope that Jack Frost leaves them and the tadpoles alone.

  4. Oh those daffs . . . especially when they’re beside a river (albeit one with low water at the moment) and a stone bridge – lovely! A bit of cheer in this odd world doesn’t go amiss.

  5. What a brilliant idea to move the bird feeder giving you a better look at your visitors. Your Mrs goosander’s haircut is more striking than our merganser’s. Still they look similar enough to be cousins.

  6. Even a skimpy post is very welcome. Your mileage is much to be admired. Sadly, our choir, is struggling, we have lost a dozen choristers, through Covid and infirmity. Our average age is in the 70’s, we are now down to 18 in number, despite attempts to get in new blood. Currently, running costs outweigh our monthly subscriptions, so the future looks very dim. What makes it so very sad is this year sees the 60th anniversary of it being formed.

    1. That is indeed sad to hear. Our attendance is less than half of pre covid levels but we are hoping that it will go up as conditions for singing improve.

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