Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Unexpected Blog Joy

Fellow bloggers will know that one of the pleasures of blogging is discovering something entirely new and unexpected. That's exactly what happened recently when Red, of Hiawatha House blog, posted about picking gooseberries in his garden and making gooseberry jam. When I read his post I was unaware of gooseberries. As I told Red in a comment ... I've got to see if I can find some jam to give it a try. Sure enough, it's right there on Amazon. I ordered and received the 12oz bottle in the photo above. The next day, with my morning coffee, I enjoyed toast and gooseberry jam. It is delicious. It is close to my all-time favorite ... plum jam. But that's not just any plum jam ... it's the jam my grandmother made from the fruit of the plum tree in the backyard of the home where I grew up. The bottom line here is, gooseberry is a great find, and so I say thanks to Red for telling us about it.

Other Recent Snaps ...

An OOCL freighter northbound into Puget Sound.
I like the reflections in this one.
Morning haze is evident in the distance but the sunshine lights up the ship nicely.

Having a lot of fun watching my new (this year) feeders.
Can't seem to stop snapping pics of these little birds.
The experts say hummers can learn to recognize humans.

Not the greatest of photos but I liked the way the morning sun was lighting 
up the ferry that sails between Seattle and Bainbridge Island.
That's Bainbridge in the distance and several homes that must have
an amazing view of Seattle across the water.

Very neat loading on this Matson freighter.
Barge and tug beyond are northbound.

Couldn't resist snapping a wide view of the sky on the morning of
the last day of July.

Unusual anchorage.
The MSC Ajaccio dropped anchor just beyond Elliott Bay Marina.
It seemed to me to be unusually close to the shoreline.
Shifts in the tide can bring it around very close ... see next pic.

Barge fascination ...

Watching the arrival of freight barges from Alaska increases my curiosity about maritime life. Early last Sunday morning I spotted the barge below as it arrived. The sun was lighting it up nicely but by the time I got the camera in hand it had made it all the way over near Alki Beach which explains the unusual perspective in the photo and the tug was already out of view. The thing that fascinates me is wondering what it's like to be the Captain on one of these voyages between Alaska and Seattle. The trip takes several days as the speed is so slow. I checked out the company website and they have a neat photo gallery. The bottom two pics are screen shots from that gallery.

Freight barge from Alaska arriving Seattle early morning.
Alki Beach in the distance.

Screen shot from company website.
How the tug/barge combination travels.
(From Alaska Marine website)

View from the tug's bridge.
I'll bet the Captain's experience here varies on every trip,
despite the same route.
(From Alaska Marine website)

Thanks for stopping by John's Island.


  1. Hello John,

    I have never heard of gooseberry jam..I am glad you found some on Amazon. They have everything.. Love the sky and ship photos. I have been on the Bainbridge ferry a few times.. The hummers are my favorite, great capture. Take care, have a great day!

  2. I have never liked Goosberrys, not sure why could be because they are hairy. There is a bush growing in our front hedge and I see fruit on it though never bother bicking them. Glad you found some nice ENglish Jam to enjoy. Myself I love Strawberry and cannot get enough Marmalade. Ever tried Marmite, you either love it or hate it

  3. Very nice. And so nice to read about the tasty jam. The same I have with eating red berries (with lots of granulated sugar).

  4. Gooseberry Jam! I have made it in the past, but not for a long time.I do enjoy a good gooseberry jam.A nice tart plum jam would be right there at the top of my list as well.

  5. I have never tasted gooseberry jam. Perhaps I really am missing something, but I try to stay away from concentrated sugar products like jam or jelly. Love your pictures and that's very interesting information about the freight barges.

  6. Wilkin and Sons Tiptree jams are the best :)
    So pleased you found the Gooseberry Jam on Amazon.

    All the best Jan

  7. I've never had gooseberry Jam.
    It is fun watching the hummers.

  8. We never know what a blog topic will bring up. I knew that gooseberry was not well known but was surprised by the reaction I got from the post.

  9. HI JOHN - Lovely Photos there -Thanks for Posting them. I've not tried GOOSEBERRY Preserve...sounds delicious. I've taken a liking to having Rosella - 'Fruit Chutney' with Butter and Cheese on my Bread Roll- delicious. Stay Well and Safe There in Seattle. Regards. KEV.

  10. You don’t have to leave home to sail the world. Seattle is such a busy port. You can visit the world by checking out the vessels on-line.

  11. How fun it would be to photograph these ships and boats and make up stories about who's on board, where they're going and where they've been.


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