A special day

Today’s guest picture comes from my camera club friend Simon. He is on holiday in the Highlands and sent me this bridge to add to my collection. It is the Jubilee Bridge crossing the marsh on the way to to Port Appin in Argyllshire.

It was raining overnight here and it was raining when we woke up. It was still raining when our neighbours Liz, Ken and Margaret came round for a celebratory morning coffee on the occasion of Mrs Tootlepedal’s eightieth birthday. Although we had been to London as part of her birthday celebrations, it wasn’t until we had got home that the actual day arrived today.

The birds had obviously been missing the feeder while we had been away because they were back in force this morning and the feeder was soon nearly empty. There were lots of birds but very little light to help me take their pictures.

Anything moving created a problem.

I went out and refilled the feeder before coffee but by lunch time, it was well down again, with the perches filled and more birds waiting in the wings.

Talking of wings, some birds just weren’t co-operative at all.

But there were usually plenty around.

Over lunch, we arranged an early evening outing and this left me time for a quick walk. It was raining quite heavily when I set out, but luckily for me it soon eased off and I had a remarkably pleasant walk for what had been a very damp day.

Young beech trees retain their leaves when old ones have shed theirs so there is often a bit of colour left beside a path.

The path itself was suffering from an identity crisis in places. Was it a stream, a pond or a track?

Oddly enough, in spite of the rain and the puddles, the real streams are still running very low and I didn’t need much of a leap to get across Jenny Noble’s Gill when I came to it.

The very dry spring and summer must mean that the ground is still soaking up the current rainfall. Indeed, although the path was wet, the mud was never very deep and I got along it pretty well, although I had to withstand a stiff challenge from a sheep at Broomholmshiels.

On my way out of the wood, I checked to see if the striking black fungus was still growing on a fallen tree . . .

. . . and decided that it was not a day for landscape photography.

There was a glimmer of brightness to the south though . . .

. . . which gave me hope that it might not be raining in Carlisle when we got there for our outing later on.

The peltigera lichen on the Broomholm wall was over, but other lichens were available . . .

. . . and it is always awash with moss.

I took a picture of Skippers Bridge to show how calm the river is . . .

. . . before scuttling home to be ready for the outing, pausing only to collect some more lichen and fungi pictures on the way.

It did stop raining by the time that we got to Carlisle and we were able to stroll along from the free public car park to the cinema where we were going to watch the film of Matilda The Musical as the final part of Mrs Tootlepedal’s birthday treat.

We quite enjoyed the film which was very well acted, but found it a bit boring at times with an uneven tone. All the same, the seats were very comfortable and it was a night out which has been a pretty rare thing for us over the past couple of years until very recently, so we drove home cheerfully.

The flying bird of the day is a chaffinch.

Footnote: My e-bike has got a puncture which is very annoying. I blame the hedge cutters. I will have to take it to Longtown next week to get the puncture repaired because taking off the back wheel which carries the motor is beyond me.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

33 thoughts on “A special day

  1. Happy birthday to Mrs Tootlepedal and it is always pleasant to have an outing on your birthday.. even if it wasn’t very interesting. I can see how the change of light hinders your ability to take landscape shots. I am used to relying on sunny weather, however this year we have had nothing but rain. It hinders gardening and taking photos…. Sadly!

    1. The paths are getting a bit slippery underfoot and I will have to start to use my poles even on low level walks. I am surprised that the black jelly fungus has lasted so well.

  2. Wishing Mrs. Tootlepedal a happy birthday! Morning coffee with friends sounds like a wonderful start to the day.

    The day may have been dark for photographing landscapes, but seems fungus and lichens did very nicely. The rock wall covered with ferns, mosses and lichens is a very beautiful photo, along with the young beech tree to brighten the day with its retained leaves. The birds and commentary are always a pleasure. I assume the sheep let you pass? 🙂

    I am sorry to hear about the e-bike tire.

    1. The moss got a bit tired during our summer drought but it is back to its best again now. It provides a fresh green colour at a rather brown time of year.

  3. Happy 80th Mrs. T – you’re a good advert for the anti-aging effects of gardening!

    The standoff with the sheep at Broomholmshiels looks like a still from a Monty Python movie 🙂

    1. As we linger over the breakfast table in our dressing gowns, reading the papers and grumbling about the weather, we often don’t feel very that we are making the most of life. 🙂

  4. Glad you celebrated such a special birthday with a rare evening out even if the film could have ben better. Sorry about the bike puncture, how annoying.

  5. Lovely calm view at Skippers Bridge.
    Renewed best wishes to Mrs T on her 80th birthday. Glad you had an enjoyable evening outing.

  6. Please pass our regards on to Mrs T. Perhaps when she is 90 you could be a little more tactful and refer to it as “a milestone birthday”? That is a very belligerent sheep isn’t it? I can almost imagine it pawing the ground and snorting steam.

  7. Happy birthday to Mrs Tootlepedal, it was not the most ideal weather of a birthday, neighter is was for a walk.
    So I hope that the evening out made it all good.

  8. One more belated Happy Birthday to Mrs. T.!
    Even in such gloomy light conditions, your landscapes are still beautiful. The moss is striking. We have not had enough rain either, but are likewise under the clouds with some precipitation happening all day today. Your birds look appropriately soggy.

    1. After a very dry summer is feels as though it has rained almost every day for the past two months. We are getting a bIt fed up with rain now although we were asking for it no so long ago.

  9. Happy Birthday Mrs T! A basket for your bike and a visit to the cinema-special treats indeed for a very special lady. Good to see the moss , fungi, lichen photos too.

  10. I bet that bridge is a great spot to watch for birds.
    I’ve finally caught up to the major event of Mrs T’s big day! Looks like she’s just a bit over a year ahead of me.
    I’m beginning to think I’ll never get caught up, but I plug along when I can. Though our rainy days are aiding in the attempt to some extent.
    I wouldn’t want to have missed out on those magnificent mosses… all green and lush! Or that lovely Skippers bridge.

    1. The mosses enjoyed our wet autumn months a lot after the dry summer. It is very good of you even to try to catch up. Daily diary posts tax the readers’ patience a lot. You can be sure that you won’t miss much if you do skip as I do a lot of the same things day after day.

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