A busy-feeling day, but also a day which felt like a "proper" November day - no rain (but no sun either except at sunrise), cold but windless, with dramatic swathes of cloud hugging the glens and forests. And as for "busy": I've decided that any day that has things in it that have to be done within a certain time-frame now feels like a busy day.
The main activity this morning was the creation of the Advent Wreath for which we gathered the greenery yesterday. It's rather splendid, and more exuberant than ever - but as the purple and pink candles haven't yet arrived, despite the assurances of the supplier, we had to make do with the remains of last year's candles until they do show up or the sacristan can rustle up some more from a hidden corner. So for that reason, and because it's a tad premature to show it off today, I'm going to save a photo of it till Sunday. I have to add, however, that pal and I had a great deal of hilarity in the making of it: the blocks of Oasis wouldn't stay under the water we were trying to soak them with, so we weighted them down with two small rocks which we found in a bag and which may in other times have been part of Golgotha ... and I have a horrid feeling we may have left them on the draining board of the sink. Not good. In other news, we picked so many pink berries on the golf course that the top of the wreath is a riot of pink, and that is A Good Thing.
My blip today comes from the afternoon, and was in fact taken through the car windscreen as we drove along the side of the Holy Loch (low tide - mudflats rather than water) towards Benmore. The mist is hanging over Stratheck and the forest above the Gardens as well as in Glen Massan to the left, and at this point we didn't know if we'd feel we were walking in cloud (eg wet) when we arrived. But it was merely picturesque and magical, and I'm going to squander one of my four remaining extras on the view down into Glen Massan from the top of Benmore Gardens because I love the outlines of the trees against the cloud below.
We had a joyful encounter with a robin, the same robin, I feel sure, as greeted me and my pal last week when I posted its photo. It appeared beside me on precisely the same branch of the same tree as last time, and followed us up to the top of the hill, perching on convenient posts and shrubs or landing on the path just in front of me. Later we came across a small bright fire burning in a clearing - presumably the gardener had left it to burn out, as there was no-one in sight. The smell of wood smoke followed us down the hill.
Later I had to make bread at the same time as cooking dinner and fit in some Italian online as I'm about to hit 200 days without interruption. And we still haven't quite decided what we're doing at Christmas - though I notice several Blippers seem to have sorted that out already. Maybe I'll just take to the hills...
My thumb, by the way, was less awful than I feared after a night's sleep. Thanks for sympathy!