Today’s guest picture is a reminder of sunny weather in London a couple of days ago. It was taken by my brother Andrew.
It is appropriate that the guest picture for today comes from my brother Andrew because it was he who rang me last night just after I had finished my post to tell me that our eldest sister Susan had passed away peacefully in her sleep. This was sad news for all her relatives, as well as her legion of friends.
She had been getting very much worse over recent days, so it was some consolation for us that she had avoided any more suffering. I was personally pleased that I had been able to sit and talk with her during my recent visit. Our thoughts go out in particular to our sister Mary who lives a few hundred yards away from Susan, and who, as well as as well as being her sister, has been her daily friend and companion for many years.
The weather here was suitably gloomy and matched our feelings when we walked to church to sing in the church choir this morning. It stayed that way all day.
It was a bit warmer than it has been though, and the above zero temperatures brought the birds back to the feeder in force.
There was plenty of action but not enough light to get a good record of it.
At least a robin had the grace to stand still a couple of times for me.
I had a quick three bridges walk after lunch before going to Carlisle for a choir practice. There could hardly have been a greater contrast with the sunny walks of the last two days.
With no views to look at, I saw lichen on moss on the parapet of the Sawmill Brig . . .
. . . and I did see a lot of flying birds on my walk, as someone was feeding the gulls as I went along the Kilngreen.
Our choir practice in Carlisle was a little sombre too, as we spent most of the time working on a beautiful but difficult and rather downbeat song.
After the practice, we drove along to Carlisle Station . . .
. . . where we picked up our daughter Annie and our granddaughter Evie from the London train. (For lovers of the Upstart Crow I should point out that their train was bang on time but while we were in the station, another was announced as running very late and a second one was cancelled altogether because of lack of train staff.)
It is lovely to have our daughter and granddaughter with us and it was a reminder than in the midst of death, life goes on.
Today’s flying birds are a small flock of starlings above the garden.
This is an appropriate shot for today as I can well remember standing with my sisters Susan and Mary while hundreds of thousands of starlings formed a great murmuration over our heads at Gretna Green one year when they had come to visit us for Christmas. Susan will be missed.