Watching nature take its course, from the top of a hill in northern England


Spud on Sunday Part LXV

Continuing Spud the dog’s Sunday seaside adventures.

No Spud! Do not eat the seashells…

Edit… If you  look closely you can see he has a seashell in his mouth, he didn’t swallow it, thankfully, he does ingest stones from time to time  though 😦 

Spud and seashell-1

Spud is a enthusiastic beachcomber, here I’m not sure if his plan is to dig up more jellyfish or bury the one he found.

Spud and jellyfish -1

Pretty isn’t it?

 jellyfish -1



Best of British

Tonight we  beach buddies will be gathering together for a feast and watching the opening ceremony of the Olympic games at the holiday cottage with the biggest TV.  I hear a rumour steak is on the menu, I’m pretty sure it will be British and as  I’m pudding monitor I can vouch for the British strawberries, although there are a few French blueberries involved, but that is the spirit of the Olympic games, isn’t it?

A friend who was involved in the building of the stadium, attended the dress rehearsal for the opening ceremony, all she will say is that it is amazing.

I’m twenty minutes late already, I must away. Enjoy.


Timeless Elegance

I think regular readers will have gathered that most things about boats and yachts don’t  really ‘float my boat’ but every now and then one catches my eye and to be frank you’d have to be blindfolded to miss the elegance and beauty of this yacht, that was sailing out of Salcombe harbour this morning.

Salcombe 2-1 

I don’t know what she is called, but we do know she shared a mooring in the harbour with  ‘Sceptre’ who raced in the Americas Cup 1958

Over the years various bits of boats and even a whole pram dinghy* have cruised into our kitchen at home, seeking warmth, ‘so the varnish will dry better’  during one of  Mr Uphilldowndale’s  boat repair and restoration projects (of which there are many) but I doubt any of the bits from this boat would fit in our kitchen, even if they came in through the window(true story).

Salcombe 1-1

*Pram dinghy? Here is one we sold earlier



(Joe still has a passion for tartan trousers, ten years on, but not for boats).



Lunch at Sharpham Vineyard

Following on from yesterdays post, the very tasty  set lunch for ten.

Cheese shapham -1

Special thanks to Mrs Ogg for driving us in comfort, through the narrow Devon lanes

lunch 2-1

lanes which are (understandably) currently chocked with agricultural machinery, whilst the farmers make hay and gather in crops whilst the sun shines, they’ve no time for leisurely lunches.


May I say thank you farmers for what we eat.


Cash Cow

The is much angst in the farming community here in the UK about the price of milk, the supermarkets and the global cream market have the farmers backed into the corner.

Here Mr Uphilldowndale debates the issues with a very fine cow.

talking to cows -1

The destination of this cow’s milk is less complicated than most, it will make very tasty cheese at Sharpham above the river Dart. They make wine too which is also very tasty (but not from milk obviously).

Cows Shapham -1


Spud on a Sunday Part LXIV

Spud the dog is in his element. Here he is on his Sunday morning walk.

Happy dog -1

Not a little girl in a  pretty sundress in sight. The early morning mist burnt off for a stunning sunny day.

However Spud did blot his copy book, I was distracted briefly whilst making the sandwiches for lunch and when I returned all that was left was lettuce leaf on the kitchen floor, Tom’s order of ham salad with pesto mayo was no more. Naughty Spud. Just as well I had preselected my beach reading.

in defense of dogs -1


Five Star

We are down in the west country,  yipeeee, the lack of blog posts this week  is directly related to the lack of Internet connection. As is the lack of  an anticipated online supermarket delivery *sigh*.

The jet stream has taken the hint and headed north leaving us basking in  much welcome sunshine.  Tom’s friend  Mr H, found a starfish yesterday, when they were swimming in the  still chilly water just off the beach… A thing of beauty.

Star light star bright -1

We tried very hard not to stress the poor thing, it was held under water until I’d got the camera sorted (I love that fact a Tom, all 17 years and six foot two inches can still come bounding up the beach proclaiming, ‘Mum, Mum look what we found!’)

after a few quick snaps it was released to the bottom of the sea again.

Underneath it was a seething mass of little glistening, rippling suckers

Star light star bright  3-1

life is a beach.

Star light star bright  1-1