Read Tugster’s recounting of the epic journey Part I here and Part II here. It was a beautiful ride through the harbor with the majestic Wavertree, with some of our friends onboard and some accompanying her along the way.
And, as I started to draw, it began to rain…
But then, I will be the one wandering the aisles with these:
Tugster: “What’s wrong with us?”
indeed. Why are we here? why are we not back in New Orleans?! damn fools.
Two years ago, we went. We watched tugs and ships. We stalked shipyards. We ate beignets. I pulled a few strokes in the Mississippi, by Algiers (but did not put my head in the water. There IS a limit to a gal’s love.)
Sigh, it beckons still. Wishing we were there. Hello, there Friends!
And! should you not be one of the lucky ones with a tug to run to, there is an app to help you find a head: airpnp, where the savvy businessfolks even tell you that there is all day happy hour at Capedeville.
Really, don’t do it.
The Hudson beckoned, I obeyed. Swimming towards a dock near the lock (before the canal cruiseship had arrived), I realized I was making no headway. It was shallow, but I was not grounded, I know I wasn’t.
Guardian boatsmen, Mike Schmidt (of Allyson Ann, pictured below with blue cap) and Stuart Pate (Dragonfly) motored over: “The lock opened and we were swept away, we figured you’d be caught, too.” Completely nonplussed, and, completely nonjudgemental, as in, no “what the bleeeeeep is wrong with you?!”
Thank you, Mike and Stuart! and to their better halves, handing out goggles and moral support.
“Oh, while in you’re in there, can you check my props? Make sure nothing’s bent?” said Capt Bill Curry of Eighth Sea.
It was scarier than I thought–yet nothing deeper than 3′. It was all metally, creepy crawly tendrils up the thighs, dark and cold. I heard a strange bubbling beneath me as if souls embedded in the bottom were murmuring. And dammit, I couldn’t find the props. Kept popping up for breath, then crawling further under Mame Fay. Finally found it, all four blades intact and not bent. Thus ends my marine surveyor gig. I don’t know how you gals and guys do it. And oil rig welders: ok–write me for a free blowspittle bottle opener.
So much thanks to our host, Fred, Capt CPO Bill, Mike Byrnes (CG, tug Urger), JED, Larry, Marie, and as always, Will! Look to Tugster and Dupee FB for photos. Beautiful, wonderful old tugs, convening at a great spot in a cool town, a warm community. We love these tugs — and the very special people who work on them–truly, words fail me.
My favorite thing about this event is that mariners and we mere mortals get to meet and mingle. It is a mix that is too brief. And, always, I think about the relief crew, in their berths, trying to sleep through all the mayhem so that they are alert for the nightshift. They are the ones who have to miss the race, the waterworks displays, the fluttering flags, the spinach eating contest, the line toss, the tattoo contest, the donkey with the PDF and glittery hooves…
When Debora Miller sashayed by with the donkey, Rene of Fireboat J.J. Harvey said, “Well, the dog and the crab just lost.” Indeed, Buddy won.
Before the race, tugs came to practice for the line toss contest:
This building with the flag marks the “Finish Line.”
Control Geek mentioned the power of the tugs. The wake they all threw at the finish line was breathtaking.
According to John McClusky, thank you!
I just missed the tattoo contest.
This is why Intrepid ‘grounded’ that November 6, 2006: the west slips of the piers along the lower Hudson silt in at a rate of 10-12″ a year.
Watch how the pro’s do it: results of the line toss contest to come.
We all have a lot of photos, I have profiles of tugs at check-in, before the race. Give a shout if you would like a photo of your tug.
And, that night, listening to vhf13, I heard Red Hook, back at work, moving and pushing as if she had never stopped to take a break and show us what she’s got.