#138 theoldmortuary ponders

A blustery weekend and some cancelled plans gave me some more time to catch up with my art course homework. This was a colour note for a blustery walk on Sunday. Storm Franklin was an altogether more blustery affair than Eunice. Franklin had blustered into the local Primary school and set off the burglar alarm. Crashing waves and the cries of Oyster catchers with a side serving of persistent electronic noise was not quite the coastal idyll I was planning to record and paint, but it is the combination I was gifted. The mellow dark notes were provided by a deeply, fruity, cup of black coffee. Black coffee is my drink of choice, now, for coastal walks, after two separate incidents of having the frothy top of a flat white splattered onto my face. I’m not a fan of drinking good coffee through a plastic lid. Thus the weekend map of my walking experience has two man made colour memories and four natural ones all combined to suggest the booming of a storm, the sound of Oyster Catchers and the irritating pulse of a triggered alarm system all interacting with a swirling seascape. This image just represents a tiny moment of time, all senses disturbed by powerful gusts of wind.

#101 theoldmortuary ponders

Defiantly red on the 3rd Monday of January. Traditionally the Blue Monday of the Northern hemisphere. Maybe it should be the Blue, blue Monday as the world marks nearly two years of Covid restrictions. We are all a little tatty round the edges regardless of the day. Maybe Blue Monday has lost its bite in the pandemic as life has progressed so long with a slightly blue tinge.

Bucking the blue trend as well was Miss Spearmint who is very assertively making sure the local beach is closed for the day by resting on the steps. Yet enhancing the day by spreading out her tail flipper to show off her lovely pink webs.

© Debs Bobber

#100 theoldmortuary ponders

#100 a late blog, not for complicated reasons. More weather related, we woke up to sunshine this morning and just felt the need to walk in sunshine and harvest Vitamin D while it was still an option.

The bright sunlight did provide some lovely complicated images though.

Fennel seed heads, shadows and repaired, cracked masonry.

Our walk just took in really familar territory at a ponderous speed and lots of basking in pools of daylight.

Cast iron railings, shadows and masonry

Nearly four hours of walking required two stops for coffee, and of course a wee.

Complicated shadows and textures outside a loo.

We were not the only ones having a bask. Miss Spearmint was also making the most of the sunshine.

As were the Cormorants.

And then just like that nature turned the lights off …

Rusty downpipe and masonry.

#97 theoldmortuary ponders

Very close to sunrise and Spearmint, the seal keeps a watchful eye on a paddleboarder. She escorts him out of the water but decides not to clamber up the slope that he uses to exit the water. Instead she decides to swim off to a nearby swimming beach.

Just moments later with the sunrise properly established she finds a beach with several swimmers. All the swimmers know not to be in the water with her and step away from their proposed swims.

Spearmint takes a few moments to bask in the rising sun.

And have a bit of a morning face wash with her flippers.

The swimmers all managed to sneak into the water on the far side of the beach and swam as she settled down for a sleep.

Its been a long two months without much sun. Sunrise and a seal is a lovely way to start the day.

#80 theoldmortuary ponders

Tranquility Bay

Three years ago I took this picture of a beach on 27/12/2018. Not in my wildest imagination did I think that I would become a year round swimmer from this beach, or that I would ever live just a short walk from here. It feels like yesterday. Not so very far over that blue horizon was an almost two year long, life altering and time warping Pandemic. It all feels quite unbelievable.

#62 theoldmortuary ponders

Good morning Miss Spearmint. We had a long walk this morning which ended up near to our swimming beach. Miss Spearmint had taken up residence to digest her fishy breakfast so there were very few swimmers and everyone was advised not to swim or interact with her. Recently a marine mammal charity has set up a swimmers/walkers whatsapp group for the whole of Plymouth Sound which pinpoints where she is swimming,or hauled out so that people can avoid interacting with her. On the whole it seems to be working.Unfotunately though Miss Spearmint does still crave the company of humans which is not good for her.

Before Miss Spearmint hijacked this blog I was going to natter on about retail counters. Not the sort that are so busy in the general run up to Christmas but one that no longer exists.

I found this sign this morning on the earlier part of my walk as I explored an undeveloped area of the Royal William Yard. This picture has everything that I love. Rust, peeling paint and mystery. A mystery that could be revealed if only we had the ledger that holds the codes for 15.SI.

Really close to this beautiful door is some very contemporary deliberate graffiti which brings a little colour to the blog which Miss Spearmint and a faded door have failed to do. I will end on a bright note!

#7 theoldmortuary ponders

Today is a red letter day. This cement mixer delivered the last pour of concrete to the new steps and slopes of our swimming area just as the tide was receding yesterday evening. Over the weekend the wooden shuttering will be removed and the concrete left to cure for a while and by next week we should all be able to swim at our favourite spots.

Swimming yesterday was not without excitement, but there is no photographic evidence. A submarine quietly slipped into port alongside swimmers who were swimming between the buoys. The deep water access to Devonport Naval Dockyard is just beyond the swimming area between Devils Point where we swim and Drakes Island which is on most of our ‘bobbing’ photos.

This misty shot shows the geography quite well. Swimmers are permitted to swim out to and along an imaginary line that runs parallel to the island. There is a cheeky fishing boat in the area that is the near the deep water, underwater trench. There were mackerel in there at the time, the submarine came later.

Mackerel accidentally played a big part in the serendipity of yesterday.

Last week at the blogging course, I had the fattest,juiciest,oak smoked mackerel for my lunch. Provided by a fabulous cafe in Bethnal Green.


© Leila’s Shop

The only place I know to buy these gorgeous, golden fish, locally, is our local Polish supermarket. Anxious to enjoy fat smoked mackerel again this weekend, a trip was quickly planned. The supermarket happens to be next to an eccentric and fascinating junk shop. This became the most random shopping trip.

There is a world shortage of Bistro sets, the cute French inspired table and chairs sets made of cast iron or aluminium. Apparently, they are all trapped somewhere in containers. On the hunt for mackerel, we found a bistro set outside the junk shop next door.

This may be the strangest two item shopping expedition ever. Thanks to


and Delta Supermarket https://www.westendplymouth.co.uk/

Thankfully last nights sunset just about brings this odd blog together riffing on a theme of red, orange and gold.