Swans on the River Lark

The weather here has taken a sudden turn and today was cold. Tomorrow I shall wear a warmer coat. I’m glad that butterbeans were already on tonight’s menu; warm and tasty, the perfect dish for an evening where winter is making itself felt.

I am hoping that MasterB’s fans are content with the Instagram pictures which appear on this page. I shall of course be putting up more photos of His Gingerness in posts here, but today he is giving way to swans.

Aunt lives by the river, and when I returned from the ham and rolls shopping trip, I saw this group of swans and had to take some photographs.

Swans in the distance

Swans in the distance

Continue reading


Back on the Boat Again

I'm feeling brave. Back on das Boot again with MasterB and I am going to try to upload some pictures. I hope for success. I am resigned to failure.

We left late. First I dilly dallied, then MasterB went to sleep in an inaccessible spot. He had been antsy in the dawn, and I had let him to play around five o'clock. He came inside again at seven, and at first seemed quite lively. I think he sloped off to bed when I was packing my bag.

Today was dull but dry. Not cold. Not hot. I am sitting here on das Boot, still in daylight though it is nine in the evening, with bare feet and most of the windows open.

Good weather for travelling with a cat. A cat who has just emitted a low growl in response to someone on another boat who spoke loudly. It is a boat that is for sale. A bit of a project I'd say, but then isn't every boat, so perhaps they are amking sure the interior looks its best. MasterB has now leapt up onto the seat in the fore cabin, and is looking outside and listening to the neighbour singing. He doesn't seem impressed. The house martins are still swooping about, catching the bugs. I think they are house martins. They have pale bellies and move too quickly to allow much study.

I was surprised how busy the marina was when I arrived. Obviously I am not the only boat owner who does not have a nine to five, Monday to Friday, work routine. But by the time I had carried my stuff abord and let the engine run for fifteen minutes, most of the cars had departed.

MasterB had a little perambulation in his harness. He sniffed intently, and made little mews. Looking at his eyes, he showed no anxiety, so I am guessing the mews were a response to the stimulus.

Going back and forth with my bits and pieces I hadn't noticed the caterpillars. Now with MasterB I realised it was feeding time at the marina.

And it wasn't just the caterpillars.



Continue reading

Back in Harness

We spent quite a while looking at cows. When we had got off the boat, or disembarked, which sounds much grander, the cows had been at the far end of the field, but as we turned from our perambulations they were close by the fence.

NotCat sat down. He watched. He lay down to give them his full attention but in comfort. I stood. The path was damp and muddy. Minutes passed. I took some photos. I got bored, and decided if we were going to watch cows all evening I wanted to sit down. I carried NotCat to the steps. The moment I had got comfortable, he lost interest in cows and turned his attention to boats. We crunched along the gravel.

NotCat did that cat thing of walking along the very edge while I held my breath and suggested the grass was nicer to paws. Continue reading

Weekly Photo Challenge: Peaceful, Take Two

Some more pix on this prompt. I find it interesting how many of us associate water with peacefulness, though the photograph with the prompt didn’t strike me as peaceful.

So, to kick off, here is the marina under snow last winter. When there is no one about, the marina is the most peaceful spot I know. I feel my breathing change when I am there.

Marina Under Snow

Summer this time, still at the marina, and the swan parents have a new brood.

The Swan Family

Continue reading

Weekly Photo Challenge: Hidden Take Two

The rain began on Thursday evening, and I went to sleep with the sound of it on the roof of the boat. When I woke in the morning it had stopped and the temperature had dropped. The marina was cloaked in a shroud of mist that was deeper by the river’s edge and stretched away across the fields, hiding the flat landscape under a white cloud.

Continue reading

Feline Adventures on the Gunwhale

The shaky video is down to my nerves I’m afraid, but it is a recording of Not Cat’s first steps on the gunwhale. He was very cautious. Too cautious perhaps. More likely to lose his balance through indecision. Later, in the early hours, we both watched one of the feral cats showing us how it’s done. She leapt confidently onto das Boot from the path, peered inside and when she realised she was being watched in return, leapt equally confidently onto the pontoon and disappeared into the night.

Still, I’m proud of my boy, and I’m looking forward to documenting his progress, but I think we might wait until the spring to let him really explore.

Afloat Again

This is from last night, when the connection kept failing, as it well may do today too.

Due to the rain earlier today, I ummed and ahhed about coming East. I don’t like the mud/boat combination. Too much cleaning and dirty bits of newspaper are involved. So it was as the sun was setting that we arrived. The view across the fens on the approach road was beautiful.I was tempted to stop and get out my camera, but common sense prevailed. It had been a lovely afternoon and the countryside in its late autumn colours, under blue skies, was like a travel brochutre with knobs on.

We are alone. There is no one else at the marina, and from the lack of cars, I’d say no one out on their boat from here either. It could be scary but it’s not. I rather enjoyed showing Not Cat the ropes. He hasn’t been on das Boot since May, though he had a mooch about the marina a few weeks ago.

Some bad moments when I came aboard ahead of Not Cat. I wanted to turn on the electrics and run the engine for a while to get us hot water. The engine wouldn’t start. My heart fell. But I got a new battery earlier in the year, so even while I was envisaging an evening with the battery charger on and the floor up, I persevered. Hurrah! Lift off.

I didn’t think the Ginger Ninja would particularly enjoy the sound, so I left him in his box while I unloaded the car. I hope that in future I’ll be able to let him out to sniff around and then make his own way down to the boat as Cat learned to do.

Not Cat explored while I unpacked and wiped surfaces, cleaning the spider poo of the last few weeks and washing down the draining board. He seemed fine, so I guess he must have left his territorial marks, fortunately not pungent ones, back in May.

I thought the boat would be cold, but although I’ve added a fleece and the electric blanket is on to air the bed, I‘ve only just closed the windows, open to clear the condensation from cooking supper. Which I thought might also be off the menu when the gas wouldn’t light. I seemed for a few crucial moments to be facing a meal of old Bombay mix and cold baked beans.

Not Cat has had a good look out of the windows and signaled his desire to explore outside, but is now asleep in the cat bed beside me. I’ve brought lots of toys to entertain him, and I’m hoping he’s not going to be too active tonight.

As usual I had overestimated the fridge’s capacity, so I’ve got some lagers chilling outside on the gunwhale. I think, now I’ve had dinner, it’s time to pop one open. I’d hate them to go to waste.