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Here are segments 1–5.

New York City is one of those places where tens of thousands of restaurants serve food from every imaginable region on earth.  Scroll through the NYTimes restaurant list for a small sampling.   Ditto music venues with sounds of the world.

The vessel below caries a mundane product that also travels from an obscure region.  Guess?

It’s not oil, like the product Scotty Sky delivers.  Oil itself is quite exotic in that it arrives from geological eras in our planet’s unimaginable past.

er . . . make that Patrick Sky.  Sorry.

And Patrick Sky delivered nothng to our mystery vessel, named for a Norse god, Balder.   Either that, or the name derives from a landscape that more denuded now that before . . .  balder?  Actually the cargo comes from a place that nearly a century and a half ago saw a mineral-motivated War of the Pacific.    And the product is  . . .

salt.  New yorkers can pride themselves that their roads, come ice and snow, sport Peruvian salt.

Balder picked up this load in Ilo, Peru.   See her recent itinerary here.

So in a few weeks–maybe–when this salt ends up on streets and sidewalks, pick some unmelted granules up and smell it.

x

You may catch hints of kiwicha and quinoa, and hearing strains of charanga, you might find your feet moving to the beat of a diablada.

And I know it’s all driven by economics, but of course, New York state has its own salt mines.  For Balder in drydock, click here.  For specs on its “self-unloading/reclaimer system,” click here.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

Here’s 3.

Cape Washington left today, following in the wake of Lia.  Zim Beijing came in;  I’m guessing “my” Bebedouro will leave soon, and the pace of ins-outs is such that I have to content myself seeing in on AIS.

Although I’m intrigued with names and itineraries like OOCL Oakland and

Zim Qingdao back here yesterday,

traffic longterm runs together and

goes out of focus and even

blurs.

For a moment, that is.  HS Livingstone entered the harbor Saturday morning, and by midmorning Sunday, it’s off Atlantic City making for Baltimore.

In

in

inbound, then outbound  .  . .

I wonder about the blur for the mariner of these global box vessels.  Here’s a question I have insufficient info to answer:  Pick a year like 1940, and the number of dockworkers that year per ton of cargo transferred between ship and shore.  Now compare the tonnage of freight handled on the docks of NYC in 1940 and 2012 and thereby calculate how many dockworkers would be needed in 2012 using the 1940 dockworker/ton rate.  And why?  Check out this article in today’s NYTimes called “…Rise of the Machines.”

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

Any guesses what’s driving the tempest here?

gCaptain posted a great story about a pizza delivery . . . and a bone for the the ship’s dog Alley.  What’s this then?  What resolve will Alley summon among its crew?

The crowd awaits, as

Smit Amandla stretches the line nearly to the breaking point for two straight hours.  Imagine the fuel bill for 16,000 hp chrning at load for 120 minutes!  More on Smit Amandla here.   And here.  Her sister ship, Wolraad Woltemade was broken up at Alang just two years ago.  See a foto of her awaiting her fate here.

But inch by inch, and without incident,

the trawler makes for deeper water.

Might the hero here really be Alley?

Once roused from its slumber on Clifton Beach and safely afloat, Eihatsu Maru takes a stroll into the harbor with Ocean Pride.

And as a treat, let’s have a look to see who else is in port today?

Over there, anchored beside  Smit Amandla  . . . this orange vessel . . . no it just can’t be . . . Super Servant 3?!@#@!??    Dockwise is everywhere these days, it seems.

Many many thanks to Colin, who put all his more productive impulses on hold in order to snap these shots and share the story.    Bravo to the towing team, the pizza delivery guys, the crew, and  . . . of course . . . Alley, ship’s mutt.

Time for some of that pizza and tea, Colin?

And two posts in one day . . . I’m not going to make that a rule, but this news couldn’t wait.

Since I woke up this May morning from a dream about attending a meditation session, the logical choice is to start my day writing a post that reflects upon–well–preservation.  Two weeks ago I wrote about the Alwyn Vincent project.  To quote the site, “she’s finally out,” and on the steel wheels ‘n rails of a synchrolift.

She was getting her “haircut and a shave” even before she stopped moving.  When all logistical arrangements converge, the late 1950s tug will travel over-the-road 60 or so miles to its new life, as a functioning steam tug on a freshwater reservoir.

To support the self-described  ‘Bunch of Crazy Farmers’ (personified by Andy, in orange below) who now own the tug, the Alwyn website says they “selling space for banners of about 1 metre square, at R5 000 ($US 639.30). The advertisements are mostly in connection with agricultural products and services, partly because everybody knows who are responsible for saving this historic vessel! Partly also, it’s because those are the firms we know, support and can ask!”

I suppose they’d accept US sponsors as well;  book your space on the hull! Contact Elma on dvijoeningwerke@telkomsa.net

Which brings me to South Street Seaport, and this sight that greeted me two days ago.   After at least 20 years of deterioration, work is happening.

Spongy wood was being removed, and

I got my first ever look inside, after 10 years of wondering . . . .

Jim and Glen peeled away tired materials from the 1980s.

Installed inside the windows years ago was this captioning that

told some of the story.  A sister vessel–New York Central #16–was saved only to end tragically at the Bourne Bridge rotary in Massachusetts, just six years ago.

The late Don Sutherland told of spending the last night aboard #16 . . .  I wish I’d recorded his telling that story. I have recorded Norman Brouwer telling the story of buying this pierside house from #16 from the late John J. Witte, and I hope to share details of that project soon.

Not everything can be preserved . . .  On Friday I caught Cheyenne –a current Witte (officially DonJon Marine) tug–heading from the East River into the Upper Bay pushing a load of (I believe) fine scrap, chopped up pieces bound for recycling.  Just a week ago, Cheyenne was pushing some  preserved vintage jets.

Some valuable artifacts might not be saved much longer unless dreams convert into reality and $$;  others like Liemba and Yavari seem to live way beyond their expected lifespans in spite of their being out of the spotlight.

Which brings up this part of a dream:  Partners in Preservation is dangling cash  $US 3 million, and  . . .<<<Tug Pegasus (1907) and Waterfront Museum Barge aka Lehigh Valley 79 (1914)  have teamed up in a grant application for $$ for preservation work each vessel needs.  As a component of the decision-making about who gets the $$, Partners in Preservation have a “socialmedia-meter” running from now until May 21.  To help Pegasus and Lehigh Valley 79 register high on this “meter,” you can do two things from wherever on the planet you may be:  1)  befriend them on Facebook and get dozens of your friends to befriend them as well, and 2)   vote DAILY here.    DAILY!  Seems like a crazy way to run an election, but  . . . that’s social media and in this case, the cause is worthy.>>>

And later this afternoon–1300–1700h  I’ll be down on Pier 25 minding the plank between 79 and Pegasus, as part of Partners in Preservation “open house” weekend.

Thanks to Colin Syndercombe for the Cape Town fotos;  all others by Will Van Dorp.

Sort of related, here’s a “tale of two projects” post from about a year ago.

Chain link fence topped by accordion razor wire coils stand exposed only after a solid steel door is raised and an even heavier drawbridge lowered . . .   what is this?

And what lurks toothily below in the moat that’s most certainly there?

Salish Sea water, of course.  Many thanks to John Van Staalduinen who snapped these fotos at the port in Tacoma.  Both vessels were launched in Bath, ME in 1976.

Unrelated . . .  Grande Marocco left not quite a week ago for  . . . Dakar.  With all those cars up on the top splash deck (monkey deck??), I’m left wondering  . .  among other things . .

about a North American portion to a Dakar Rally.  I know some people who would welcome the addition of a North American component to that race.

I’m wondering what Grimaldi ships to places like Cotonou and Banjul in West Africa.

Graphics on ships . . .  if Charles Fazzino has been designated official artist of OpSail NY 2012, I wonder if we can expect designs like these on tall ships in less than a month . ..   How did he get chosen?  By whom?  To what end?  Who else was considered?

And one more from the north coast by Michigan Exposures . . . who might be planning a foray into the sixth boro . . . it’s Arthur  M. Anderson.  If Titanic had its Carpathia, then Edmund Fitzgerald had its Arthur . . . unfortunately too late.  I love the mild-dazzle paint on these vessels.  Arthur is a product of the American Ship Building Company yard in Lorain, OH . . . another manufacturing center transformed into  . .  housing.   If you don’t know the Lightfoot Fitzgerald song, here’s the link.   Otherwise, check out this supremely moody foto of a laker.

Thanks to John, John, and Ken for these fotos.  There are even two here by me.

I had planned something different, and this foto is certainly NOT great, but . . . what it shows is River Wisdom  Qingdao, China-bound and Duncan Island Red Hook, Brooklyn, USA-bound.  They’re passing each other at sea level Pacific side just “south” of the Miraflores locks.

Here was River Wisdom about a half hour earlier.  Any idea what she paid for the transit?  Warning . . . I don’t know the answer, but I can come close.   Number of vessel transits annually?  Answer follows.

Any idea when Duncan Island will arrive at the dock in Red Hook?  Again, I don’t have the answer, but bear with me.

Farfan is the assist tug for River Wisdom  . . . as I write this.

I’ve forgotten the name of this yacht, but with that tall a mast and that many spreaders, it could be the

same one I’ve seen in New York and Newport . . . like here.  (Note:  The yacht is Tiara.  It rents for a mere $200k/week.)

Some answers or attempted ones:  PTCC Tortugas paid over $200,000 to transit the Canal.  In cash.  At least 48 hours in advance.  The alternative is 8000 miles around Cape horn and about two additional weeks .  .  .  .    Richard Halliburton swam the Canal in August 1928.  Took him 10 days.  Cost him 36 cents!

14,000 vessels transit the Canal annually.  52,000,000 gallons of fresh water per vessel do the work.  Good thing the rainy season is generous to the watershed.

For River Wisdom, New York PLUS 7 days put her here.  Balboa PLUS 30 days will put her in Qingdao.

Might Duncan Island arrive with her bananas and other tropical fruit at the dock in Red Hook around March 22?  (Just looked it up . . . they could be there already the 18th!!!.)

All fotos by Will Van Dorp, in the past two hours.

Quick post . . . more on the 1934 Panama-built  B/E Atlas III.  My guess about the B/E is that it’s Spanish for “barco d’educación” since it’s a training vessel.  Actually, check this site for dozens of “canal zone” era fotos and newer ones.

Let me focus on the Z-Tech tugs a bit.  Click here for more info on them.  Kamari . . . have seen it in New York’s sixth boro…  here assisted Atlantic-bound by Calovedora   on the stern as Dolega heads back south for the next job.  I’ve never seen a paint job like the one on the lighthouse.

Sub-sea construction oilfield services vessel Intrepid here geta assisted by Cacique on on bow and

Pecora on stern.

Vergaquas 1 assists Overseas Rosemar (I’ve seen her in New York’s sixth boro) on stern

and Dolega on bow.  Pilotboat heads back south.

Besides all the construction you see in the background, the foreground shows the Panama Canal Railway.  Originally I’d planned to take the passenger service up to Colon, but I decided to stay here and watch a day go by from relatively the same perspective, like hanging at my “offices” on the KVK.   Note in the background the vessel above the Miraflores lock waiting for traffic to flow Pacific-bound.

My hunch is that most of the day’s traffic on the railroad is containers on stacktrains like this, transferring containers from the Atlantic port of Manzanillo (MIT) to the Pacific port of Balboa.

Passenger service runs north early in the morning and south late in the afternoon.  Victims of SS Central America, their pockets and bags stuffed with California gold passes from the Pacific to the Atlantic on this railroad. One of my favorite books in Ship of Gold in the Deep Blue Sea.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp, who will soon head back out.

The NPR station I support–WNYC–has been running an interesting BBC series called “History of the World in 100 Objects.”  This has itself spawned a local variation called “the story of NY in 10 objects.”  So far, WNYC has revealed 10, 9, and 8;  more next week.

I’m curious whether the seven remaining will include water-related, sixth boro-linked items.  Certainly, any ship that passes through the Narrows is emblematic of the story of this city.  Any the vessels never stop!  John Watson took these two this morning.  CSAV Suape heads out, and

CMA CGM L’etoile arrives, for a short appointment for some container shuffling in the port of NYC/NJ.   Suape‘s namesake is a Brazilian port, and the vessel, whose original name was MedBaffin, first floated three years ago off the Chinese island of Zhoushan.  L’etoile . . .  star, comes from Hyundai Heavy Industries in Ulsan.    Vessels come and go, all weather and hours of night and day . . . a gauge of tireless trade.

Is it Noy Noy or

NouNou, or are they the same?

Can you guess the origin of that flag?

St. John’s is the clue.  Passing here is OOCL Norfolk.

Mare Transporter on 1/28 (a month ago) and then

on 1/31.  Today she’s in Alexandria aka الإسكندرية‎, as in Egypt’s largest port.

NYK Meteor as focused on a chock, and then

steel braces, and then

spare chassis,

On February 1st she departed the east end of the KVK, and now she’s in port in Busan.

Ditto Ever Diadem . . . on Feb 7 she left the sixth boro;  since then she’s stopped at half a dozen ports, traversed the thin continent at Panama, made her way in and out of the

the Golden Gate, and is headed  . . .  where in Asia?

And what would surround us in our daily NYC lives without the goods on these vessels?

Many thanks to John Watson for the first two fotos.

All fotos today come from Isaac Pennock at various Canadian shorelines along the eastern Great Lakes.  And an interesting set of vessels this is.  Take James A. Hannah, foto shot in Hamilton.  Look at her lines.  You’ve seen a sibling of this vessel here before.    Recall Bloxom here and in the graveyard here. More on James A. Hannah and siblings at the end of this post.


This foto of M. R. Kane was taken in Toronto.  Kane appeared in the sixth boro on this blog three years ago in a foto Bowsprite took from her cliff.  Finally . . . a closeup.

Wilf Seymour foto was taken Port Colborne.  Seymour is Port Arthur, TX-built in 1961 and some of you may remember her as M. Moran!  Here are more specs from the McKeil Marine site.

Salvor is Long Island-built former Esther Moran. Salvor, delivered in 1963, was hull # 417.   To add some context here, K-Sea’s Maryland was also built  at the Jakobson yard in Long Island, hull # 406 and delivered a year before Salvor.

There’s not much to see here, but I believe–Isaac asserts– is the Australian-built, Canadian-flagged K-Sea tug William J. Moore, taken here in St. Catherines.  I’ve never heard of this vessel. I quote from Birk and Harold’s site:  “at one point she was dubbed the largest and highest-horepower tug in Australia.”  Who knew?

I located this image in the photo archives of Marietta Manufacturing.  Taken on May 20, 1944, it shows LT-650.  Bloxom was launched a month later, same location, as LT-653.   Two years later, LT-650 was sold to China, and current disposition . . . I’ve no clue how to trace.  Is there an US Army tugs-in-China expert out there?    James A. Hannah was launched a year later–July 1945 as LT-820.   Fleet siblings of James are David E. Hannah and Mary E. Hannah, respectively LT-815 (April 1945) and LT-821.  David E. appears to have been out of service since 2009, somewhere near Chicago.  Birk and Harold have her series of names listed here;  one of those former names was   Kristin Lee Hannah, shown here, although the date of build listed as 1953 is wrong.  Click here for a 2009 article on the demise/auctioning off of Hannah Marine.  I’d love to see a current foto of David E. or know her approximate whereabouts.

Many thanks to Isaac for these fotos.  Also thanks to the Point Pleasant (WV) River Museum pointing me in the direction of the Marietta Manufacturing photo archives.

Ooops . . . I used the title “mardi gras” three years ago, so I’ll add “2″ today, but it’s Fat Tuesday, and where is this eponym of a city synonymous for festivities of the day?

Why, the sixth boro  . .  that’s where, and headed out as quickly as possible.  But focus on her a moment;  containerships with center houses separated from the engine might be more common in the future.

Here’s how loaded she was when she arrived yesterday, as captured by John Watson.

She departed with possibly fewer containers showing, making this

mardi maigre  . . . skinny tuesday.

Not that only a few containers fit on the vessel.  CSAV Rio de Janiero is post-panamax, i.e., she won’t fit through the current Panama Canal.  To compare her dimensions with a container vessel recently featured here, she has the same beam as APL Indonesia but is 111′ longer and carries 1045 more TEUs.

Right now she’s bearing down on Baltimore, flying into a 25-knot wind.

Here she’s clears Sandy Hook.

Third foto thanks to John Watson.  All others come thanks to Jean Pierre Lailedaigle;  I hope to get Jean Pierre’s fotos more often  . . . .    CSAV Rio de Janiero was launched in 2009 as Medondra.

Unrelated:  Hats off to Rick Old Salt for this post on the crisis PortSide NewYork’s Mary Whalen.    A public meeting to discuss saving her will be held this coming Monday.  See info at the end of Rick’s post.  The folks at PortSideNewYork and Mary Whalen HAVE contributed much to sixth boro cultural programming the past few years, but “homelessness” has reduced their capacity to succeed.  Here’s a post I did on Mary Whalen back in 2008.

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