Today’s guest picture comes from my brother Andrew. He took this picture of the station at Stamford last week, while he was waiting to meet my two eldest sisters who were joining him for an outing. It was not busy.
The forecast rise in temperature duly took place today (after another very light shower of rain over night) and we peaked at 83°F (27°C) in the mid afternoon. This is definitely warm but not hard to bear. It looks as though we may miss the worst of the heat tomorrow, though it will be hot on Tuesday.
It was very pleasant as we cycled to church after breakfast. The church organ has still not been reinstated, and our organist Henry had installed his practice organ to see how that went. It turned out to be too quiet to be satisfactory, and we will go back to the piano next week.
After the service, I went home by way of the corner shop and then joined Mrs Tootlepedal for a cup of coffee.
After coffee, we went out into the garden and while Mrs Tootlepedal trimmed back a philadelphus in the back border which was encroaching on the rhododendrons, I trimmed back a spirea beside the middle lawn which was getting too big for its boots.
I did some watering, and wandered about taking casual pictures with my new camera. It dealt with some strong contrasts pretty well, I thought.
I haven’t edited these pictures, and this is just how the camera saw things. It definitely likes yellow.
It picked out the first flower on the inula this year.
. . . and was strangely drawn to my current favourite rose.
Blackbirds were feeling the heat a bit.
A neighbour dropped in for a chat with Mrs Tootlepedal and a look round the garden, and while they chatted, a white butterfly settled near the greenhouse. I got out my bird camera to take its picture from a distance.
I mowed the front lawn after the visitor had gone, and found that our recent hotter weather had caused the grass to grow a lot. Whereas up to now I have been hunting around for blades of grass to cut, this time I had to empty the box three times. If it would be kind enough to rain properly, the lawn might be fully recovered from the damage that the jackdaws did in spring. As it is, it doesn’t look too bad at all.
I took another couple of flower pictures with my new camera, a flourishing clematis on the fence . . .
. . .and a lonely fuchsia flower, the only one on the garden itself so far.
Then I went in for lunch, and a chance to look out at the birds. It was mostly siskins, but with the odd greenfinch and sparrow.
After lunch, we settled down to watch the Tour de France. After a while, I began to feel that the stage was rather too dull to justify a life of idleness, so I went out into the garden in the hope of seeing butterflies. I took my bird camera with me, and in the total absence of any butterflies, I pointed it at anything that caught my eye.
I went back in and watched more of the Tour, but it didn’t get any more interesting. I roused myself again, drank a cup of tea made by Mrs Tootlepedal, and went off for a cycle ride of my own.
For the record, Mrs Tootlepedal says that the stage got a lot more exciting as soon as I stopped watching it.
It was hot and quite windy, and after my efforts yesterday on my road bike, I treated myself to an electrical outing today. To compensate, I pedalled as fast as I could, and averaged over 14 mph for a 20 mile loop round the Solwaybank wind farm. Electric bikes are fun!
I had my new camera with me and tried it out as I went round. It wasn’t a good day for views with a rather hazy light, and I was rushing along too fast to pick out any wild flowers except a crop of agrimony which I knew was there.
I took a rather arbitrary collection of shots as I went along. The camera picked out a tree against a dark background quite well …
. . . and could make out the turbines against a pale background too.
It managed the dappled light and shade of the Solwaybank road . . .
. . .and it could just make out the distant hills of the Area of Natural Beauty where I had been cycling yesterday.
The wind was behind me now as I zoomed along the road home . . .
. . . and I was too busy pedalling to take any more pictures.
When I got home, I had another cup of tea as we have been advised to take car of our hydration, and then I mowed the greenhouse grass and the vegetable garden paths.
I went in for our evening meal and a last look at the birds. There was a lot of action at the feeder.
The flying birds of the day are a collection of questing goldfinches.