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These vessels recently left a trading post that was starting up around the same decade the sixth boro replaced the initials N. A. for N. Y.

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As of this writing, these three vessels are entering the Indian Ocean on a historic re-enactment.

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Earlier this month, Colin Syndercombe visited the three vessel at the docks in Cape Town.  Oosterschelde, Europa, and Tecla have an amzing combined age of 295 years!!  Tecla was built in my father’s hometown of Vlaardingen, nine years before my father’s birth.

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Preparing to get under way.

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Departing on this leg of the trip are some cadets of the South African Navy.

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Fair winds . . . bon voyage.

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Click here for fares and schedules.  Of note, in August 2013, there’s a sail from Perth to Houtman Abrolhos archipelago and back to Perth.  This picturesque Indian Ocean island chain saw the mutiny and wreck of the VOC ship Batavia on her maiden voyage and the subsequent murders of over 200 survivors by a band of other survivors.  This Lord of the Flies tale serves as basis for the Mike Dash’s compelling account Batavia’s Graveyard, if you’re looking for summer reading.

For an upbeat parting shot, here.

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Many thanks to Colin, who has previously sent lots of interesting fotos from 8000 miles away in Cape Town.

In May 1962 John Kennedy had a party upon turning 45, and most people remember one person who attended.  But there were other entertainers who sang too like this native New Yorker (yes, he is.) and another singer, now largely unknown, whose name appears on that blue banner center below.   If you don’t remember the name, here’s (IMHO) her best song.  She also performed with this neighbor of mine from Queens, NY.   But this vessel?

She might be called Agulhas II, arriving yesterday in her homeport, having come from winter half a world away to the north just in time for winter way down south.  Here’s  her predecessor, once involved in an Oldendorff vessel (no, not this one) in the far far south.

Here she arrives after a month-long journey.   For the complete press release announcing her mission, click here.

Whether Miriam Makeba becomes her unofficial or official name, Agulhas (needles) refers to the true southernmost cape aka point of Africa.

Enseleni is one of the assist tugs. Click here to see her launched  . . .  in a manner I’ve never seen.  Click here to see a wide array of South African tugs.

Here’s a closeup of pilot boat Gannet (1977).

And the answer (correctly supplied in the comment by anonymous [Ann O'Nimes??])  to the figurehead question .  . . Europa it is!    And in a graphic demonstration of the interconnection of the sixth boro to almost everywhere watery, click here and here for fotos of Europa on a recent visit to the US “north coast.”  Has Europa ever been to New York?

Europa, 1911 launched!!  and beautifully preserved.  A reminder to, please, vote for Tug Pegasus and Waterfront Barge, today and every day until May 21.

All fotos here come compliments of Colin Syndercombe, who’s generously serving up the shipping news from the Cape Town waterfront.  Thanks much, Colin.

A final treat from Miriam Makeba . . .  Pata pata.  Fifty years ago she was a popular enough in the US to get major play on top-40 radio

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