March weather and two visitors

We are suffering from a cold spell accompanied by high winds. We had some pretty impressive clouds last night.




We had two large visitors this afternoon. Firstly, Alert turned up. One thing has changed. Alert used to carry a good compliment of buoys at the stern but, nowadays, it seems a bit short of these. Firstly, I got a shot as they were closing the swing bridge.



It has a nice complement of aerials and radar units.


It also has a substantial crane at the stern. There is a speedboat dropped on the stern nowadays. It used to be “wall to wall” buoys there.


As Alert was coming it, a rather nice little yacht was leaving. I hadn’t seen this yacht before.


Later, HMRC Valiant arrived. We don’t normally  get two of these large visitors at the same time.



The swans are at it again

It is that time of year for all of the birds around. Mates mean everything and any competition gets seen right off. Here are a few shots of today’s confrontation. The following is a whole series of images showing confrontation between swans in the wet dock.

The errant swan got himself trapped between the lock and the other swan. Urgent action was required.








Dod the swan ever think about the value of the boats that he was passing – grin!





You have to look carefully into the two images to find the swan!

Freedom at last – along with a mate?


Great fun to watch but great drama at the swan level.

Back to normal – It is Suntis time again

So getting back in the swing of things, I should cover the normal things. After two years in the apartment, we have got a bit used to Suntis arriving every two weeks or so but I thought that I would cover it again as I haven’t spent any time on it for a long while. It arrived in Ipswich yesterday but only came through the lock this morning.



No matter how many times I see them do it I am always impressed with the skill involved.

The Port always provides staff to assist with the tying up.

IMG_2132 (1)

IMG_2133 (1)




When I did the entry the other day, I mentioned that Anglo-Norden put out blocks to stop parking when Suntis is due. Well, there is always someone who gets in the way. This time, it is a little red mini.


This one is quite easy to work around. Let’s hope that it doesn’t get damaged.

The view from the balcony

As there isn ‘t much going on, I thought that I would give you a few shots over the day. The idea was that I did a morning late afternoon and nighttime shot. I did the two later ones yesterday and the  plan was to take the daytime one today when the sun was shining. Some hope! It is overcast today. Still, the idea still works so here goes.

Technically, the daytime and evening one were both taken with my iPhone using the DMD Panorama free app. With this, you just start it off and move the camera around the shot making sure that the two little icons on the screen match. Each time they match, the software takes a picture and then stiches the whole thing together. The nighttime one was more difficult as I had to mess around with exposures so this one was taken using my real nice Canon 700D digital SLR on a tripod (no flash). I set the lens to f22 and 2 seconds exposure, then carefully turned the camera on the tripod and took the pictures using the live view on the LCD. I then stitched the resulting images together using PhotoShop. Easy!

Firstly the daytime one (iPhone).

51 Patteson Road, Ipswich - England, United Kingdom

Then the early evening shot (iPhone)

51 Patteson Road, Ipswich - England, United KingdomLastly the Evening shot (Canon 700D)

night panorama

Don’t forget that you can see larger versions by right clicking on any image and seeing it in a new tab or window.

Just a normal couple of days

As I have to get back into the swing of this, I thought that I would show a “normal” day – yesterday 13th March.

Firstly, Black Molly raised her sail and then put it away again. Just testing, I guess.


Our Josie Grace is the replacement fishing boat that we had last year. (I think that I have mentioned this.) She now sits over by the lock gates on a regular basis. Sometimes she pulls over to our side to unload or to fix nets but her regular place now seems to be here:


We had a bit of a bother on the A14 recently when Fairline had a boat moved from Oundle, near Peterborough,. The boat was so wide that it blocked the road. Well, the number of boats sitting outside their facility changes quite regularly and, strangely, we never seem to see boats come or go! Still, this is the current situation. There is a lot of money sitting there!



Lastly, as I am doing this on Saturday and not the 13th, I will bring you some news of “Song of the Whale”. Now, in 2012, she went off to the Mediterranean for some months but she stayed here all of last year. A few days ago she left Ipswich and went down to Margate on the Kent side of the Thames estuary. It seems that she was checking on the porpoise activity in the Thames. I was tracking her coming back to the Wet Dock and was following her down the Orwell. I got distracted by the F1 qualifying in Melbourne. When I next looked, she was calmly docked in her old berth over by Trimilea. Still, a photo of Song of the Whale is never wasted!


I hope that these daily activities aren’t boring and I will now try and keep it up somewhat regularly.

So am I back or not?

I had a nice comment posted the other day asking whether I had stopped the blog or if I had a problem. The truth is both  of them but it was only temporary. I stopped the blog at Christmas mainly because there was a lack of new things to talk about. One can only write so often that there is an HMRC  or Alert in the Wet Dock or that Suntis had arrived again. Also, I had a rough year last year with my health and I needed a few months to get back to normal. Mind you, the question often is “what is normal anyway” – 🙂 Well, I am feeling much better and getting back to doing things properly rather than finding excuses not to do anything.

Today’s post is prompted to two things. Last week Anglo Norden put up some new signs.


Since then there has been no reduction in the vehicles that park on the wharf overnight – or even during the day when Anglo-Norden are around. I assume that, as the weather gets better, we will see people fishing and crabbing as usual. We don’t see much swimming but…

Still, if you make the rules then I assume that you can break the rules. Yesterday, Anglo Norden put out some of the their wood packets across the wharf. They do this nowadays when Suntis is due. They have had some problems with cars being parked up to the edge when they arrive to unload first thing. This, nominally, stops this. We were confused as Suntis isn’t due until Sunday and they were putting these out on Wednesday. Then, this morning, we saw a car inside the barriers. We were trying to work out how that  happened when, suddenly, there were lots of cars parked inside them.


There is obviously some sort of big meeting taking place. Lots of suits and briefcases going in. Now, I wonder what is going on? Does anyone out there know?

Let me know if you are glad to see the blog back. I will try and keep it going now but only about twice a week.