Azeleas in the afternoon
Late afternoon in Bemore Botanical Gardens; late in the wonderful flowering of the rhododendrons and azeleas. From the distance, the colours are as wonderful as ever, but when you get up close you can see the elongation of each floweret that is the prelude to their falling.
We were there just before closing; at 5.40pm we were in the formal garden looking at a wonderful outdoor exhibition of the work of international photographers. It was silent, as almost every other visitor had gone home, when suddenly we heard the skilled drumroll of a woodpecker on the hillside, answered as it were by the repeated call of a cuckoo further off.