Farewell

Red Dawn IV

Goodbye Red Dawn IV

Well, we have finally managed to sell our boat, Red Dawn IV. We went down to the marina last week where both parties signed the documents and we did the hand-over. We understand payment has now been received by the broker but I’m not sure it has come through to us yet! We had to take a drop from our asking price but it is a weight off our minds and at least we no longer have to pay yard fees.

We had gone down to the marina in our motorhome and once we had finished all the necessary details with the boat we headed on up the coast to spend a few days on a campsite near Southwold in Suffolk. This is a place we had always intended to sail to but somehow never did. This time we cycled there from our campsite, a round trip of just under 18 miles, and having looked at the harbour entrance and mooring arrangements we decided we hadn’t missed much. Don’t misunderstand me, Southwold is a lovely place, quaint and old-fashioned, but the harbour is not the most inviting we have seen and seems mainly used by small fishing boats.

Southwold Beach

Southwold Beach

We stopped by the beach, which was being well used but was not over-crowded despite the very hot day. Mostly people were being sensible about social distancing. We didn’t go on to the beach and hadn’t gone prepared to do so. Although the countryside around that area is wonderful the ride in to Southwold was not the most pleasant, being unavoidably mostly on main roads busy with traffic heading for the beach.

On the second day we cycled to Walberswick, a slightly shorter ride at just under 17 miles. This is on the opposite side of the estuary to Southwold and is again a quaint, mostly unspoiled small town. There is no beach here but it is a short distance by ferry or footbridge across to Southwold. We sat for a while on a bench overlooking the harbour for a snack and a drink which we had taken with us, watching children fishing for crabs in the estuary before treating ourselves to an ice-cream in the town centre then heading back. This ride was slightly more pleasant as the roads were a bit quieter on the way to Walberswick.

Our third day was a shorter ride of a mere 10.8 miles, in a circular route to enjoy the local country lanes and scenery around the campsite at Blyford. The day was cool when we started but soon warmed up, turning into another scorcher. We were glad that on all three days we returned to the motorhome by lunchtime and spent the hot afternoons relaxing and reading while trying to keep cool.

The campsite, in a lovely location, was obviously popular with tents and caravans as well as our motorhome, and most of the spaces were occupied but they were very well spaced. Even though the facilities were not in use and people had to be self-sufficient regarding toilet and washing facilities nobody seemed to mind; tent dwellers having also brought toilet tents with them.

Some families were there with children but there was plenty of space for them to run around and enjoy themselves without causing any problems and the site was quiet from mid-evening onwards. One extended family occupied about 3 spaces and had already been there for a week. While parents returned home (and to work) at the weekend the grandparents were staying for a second week with all the grandchildren. They seemed to be well organised with a paddling pool, a basketball basket, plenty of other things to play with and the caravan, tents and awnings all lit up with fairy lights at night. I understand they camp there every year and have done so for many years now, which in itself is a recommendation for the site.

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Absent

Just a quick note to let you know that I will be taking a short break. We are off in our motorhome for a week, for a change of scenery. With things being a bit uncertain I’m not sure if we will find a decent Wi-Fi connection so will not be posting here.

Now lockdown has eased a bit we need to go to check on our still unsold boat, which we haven’t visited for over 6 months – it will be in need of a good clean. We’re hoping that with things easing up it will begin to rekindle people’s interest in buying a boat!

Then, on the way home we are stopping off for a couple of days to cycle an interesting looking trail on our tandem now that campsites are beginning to open up, all-be-it with certain restrictions. I will probably write a post about the ride on our return. One of the advantages of motorhomes is that we can be self-sufficient and easily socially distance without too much inconvenience.

See you again next week.

Haul Out

I have previously mentioned here that we are selling our boat. Having owned various boats over the years we are now hanging up our oilskins to go roaming in our motorhome instead. In March I wrote about our final trip when we sailed round from our long-term home port to the marina where our yacht broker is situated. (You can refresh yourselves about it here.) At the time they were not able to haul the boat out of the water and onto the hard-standing so we knew we would have to go down again before too long to finish up cleaning and clearing out the boat.

‘Red Dawn IV’ has at last been taken out of the water and we are going down tomorrow for several days to sort it all out, although we may still need to go down from time to time  to check it over and keep it spotless.

While we are away I may or may not have a great deal of access to the Internet. There is WiFi at the marina but it can be unreliable so if I do not post anything over the next week don’t be surprised. If I can I will, but no promises. Normal service should resume next week!

In the meantime, if you are interested to find out all about our boat we have set up a little website to assist with the selling where there are plenty of photos. Check out https://reddawniv.wordpress.com.

Windy Weather

I have just got back from a few days down on our boat. We hadn’t been there since before our month away on the continent so we felt we should go and check it out. We went down last Wednesday which, after a cloudy start and some rain on the journey turned out to be a continuation of the recent heat-wave.

There were one or two little jobs to do – not least mend the sea-toilet, which had acquired a small leak on the inlet valve (clean water I hasten to add!). First we had to find the boat as we had been told by the marina that they might have to move it.  (You may recall we had given up our marina berth as we were intending to leave the boat in France. You can read the sorry tale of that adventure here.). Out first point of call was the Office to discover where they had put the boat; we were told it was still in the same place and we can probably stay there. This was good news as it would be a nuisance having to look for it every time we visit! Hubby then set to mending the loo.

That night the wind got up and it hardly let up over the next four days! There were a few lulls but it was also very squally and we had some thunder. Nobody much was going sailing and nor did we. The people in the boat next to us sat it out as well – they were supposed to be off on holiday! Fortunately there wasn’t a great deal of rain and it was mostly warm, just very windy.

So what did we do? Well we couldn’t do any varnishing as we couldn’t be sure it would dry before it rained (we did get some and it frequently looked as if it might even when it didn’t). We read a lot, books, magazines, etc. I wrote a short story for my next Writer’s Group meeting, we played cards a bit, went for a few walks. We had taken our watercolours with us and both did a bit of dabbling. I just did a couple of little scribbly sketches, nothing worth sharing! We also visited the Burnham Art Trail which began at the weekend and lasts for a week. We didn’t see it all but I was a little disappointed as I didn’t think it was quite as good as last year; I’m sure there were more open studios then but even so it was an enjoyable day out.

Today of course, because we were coming home, it was a wonderful day. Our neighbouring boat was finally able to get away for their holiday. It would have been a great day to go out for a sail but sadly we had to couldn’t stay any longer as we have things to do tomorrow. Perhaps we’ll go again in a few weeks time and go for a sail then, after all there is still the varnishing to do.

Busy Boy

Busy boy,
sailing on Grandpa’s boat,
playing pirates,
fishing for crabs;
to tired to eat dinner.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *
We are down on our boat for a few days. Our son, daughter-in-law and grandson are with us, taking him sailing for the first time during this warm and sunny spell of weather.

Sea Sprites

Sea sprites chuckle and play
in the foamy bow-wave spray
pushed aside by our boat
as she steadily ploughs her way
through the waves.

Boat

The curving sails
gently cradle
the breeze that blows
our boat along.

Waves

Eyes looking right, left,
all round, playful waves jostle,
my little boat bobs.

All Day

All day the rain fell heavily
as we drove down to the boat,
then suddenly; clear blue sky,
bright evening sunshine,
glorious golden sunset.

On the Boat

Arrived on the boat today
for a few days away,
knowing and fretting that back at home
my weaving isn’t progressing.

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