Thought I'd create a post title using a line from one of my favourite 60's songs, "Summer In The City" by The Lovin' Spoonful as it's such a happy positive song that goes so well with a hot summer day.
Ah the summer of '66. A time when haircuts looked like badly fitting crash helmets and songs lasted 2 minutes. MP3's ? Nah you strapped your Dansette to your back and set off with a stash of albums under your arm. Bit of a bugger when jogging but with the needle (yes a needle) jumping in and out of the vinyl tracks, it was the birth of rap and hip hop.
Bet you never knew that.
But I've digressed already. Back to hot summer days.
And amazingly in Leeds, we've just had a couple of hot summer days. I know. Hard to believe !
No doubt autumn will arrive next Wednesday and we'll be into winter by Friday. Ah well.
So while it lasted, I headed out for some much needed exercise and took my trusty camera with me.
I quite enjoy watching Ray Mears and his Bushcraft shows even though I know I've never be in a situation where I'll need to skin a snake for cooking purposes or chop the stumpy bits of certain trees as they make the best firewood.
I tend to zone out the important stuff and just enjoy it as an entertainment show.
So even if I was dying of hunger in the Leeds suburbs on a Sunday afternoon, as you do, I'd still not know if these pretty little red things were ok to eat or not.
I suppose if you're dying, it hardly matters and I'd pig out on them. Today, knowing I had a Chinese meal to go home to, I was happy to just photograph them.
And yes, before you ask, I've no idea about these little guys either.
Apart from thinking I once saw them on the earlobes of Bet Lynch, they could be Venus Fly Traps for all I know.
As there were no flies in the area, I gave them a wide berth just in case.
My walk was becoming a full blown botany expedition and as it was hot, I welcomed the numerous stops I had to make to take these photos.
I'd also like to save time and typing by stating here and now that I don't know what ANY of the flowers are on this post. I suspect there is a rose coming along later but that's just a guess.
This is obviously a singing plant of some sort as the flower is a definite copy of a gramophone horn.
I listened, but apart from a bee mistaking my ear for a flower and my ear hairs for stemen, I heard no music.
There were lots of bees about today but I only had my 75-200 zoom lens on the camera so I couldn't get all that close to any of them.
I really need a good marco lens but that's for another day.
Here is a little fella working away in the hot sunny weather. Go on my son !
I may be proving myself a liar now as I'm pretty sure these were lavender plants....or lilacs !
I donno. Why do I even try ?
But it was certainly a bee. I'm pretty much sure it was a bee. Yes it was a bee.
The next two photos are of roses. There, I've said it. I've also said it with a little more confidence than I have earned in this field.
Just about every garden I passed on my short walk today contained roses of one variety or another. Some were small and delicate, some were huge and just as delicate. Red, white, orange, yellow, they all made for a very colourful spectacle.
By now I was at the furthest point of my walk, a good 25 minutes from home ! Well I never claimed to be training for Bejing y'know !! No this was just a gentle walk with my camera on a lovely sunny day and what could be better ?
Eating an ice cream actually but that wasn't going to happen.
This was the final out and out flower shot I took.
I just liked the red against the green lawn as I knew that using the zoom lens with a large aperture would ensure the lawn would be totally out of focus and make it seem like the flower was in front of a green screen.
There was colour everywhere today and not just on my cheeks. We Brits do like our gardens and although you don't see vegitables being grown like you did in years gone by, front gardens in my part of Leeds are a joy to behold.
I just have to include one more photo of a bee ! I was at the corner of my street and thought I'd finished taking photos when I saw movement on this flower.
I got the camera ready and watched through the lens as this little fella made his way up the flower like it was his own spiral staircase.
He came around and went behind and came around again.
I focused on the top, knowing he'd get there eventually and sure enough, up he popped like a little buzzing sherpa.
I've left the other bulby thing in the photo as I like the look of it. It's like a little helicopter pad for bees !!
So that was it......my Sunday afternoon walk. Was out for just over an hour and only took one photo that wasn't of a flower or plant or some sort.
And here it is.......this one's just for you Dennis.