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Inspiration for this post found me when I was looking at the WordPress homepage about a month ago and noticed a blogpost by a woman called Celine. She called it the “30 before 30 project.” At some point before she made a list of 30 things she wished to have done before she turned 30.
Tomorrow is my 21,900th morning on this earth, i.e., I turn 60! It’s stunning, traumatizing, but I have to get over it. When I was under 30, the way I imagined 60 is quite different from how it feels to me, but that’s another story.
I decided that what distinguishes the 60 mark from the 30 is that rather than looking forward to things yet to do, I feel drawn to reflect on what I’ve gotten from the 21,900 days behind me. So here’s my list of six lessons:
1. Ask. Cultivate curiosity. How could anyone look at this scene and not wonder what it is? Curiosity supports youthfulness, no matter your mileage or years.
vessels named Ever Diadem passing scows named Mighty Quinn, so be it. I know I’ve NOT done anything to hallucinate, so maybe in time I will understand. In fact, as I took fotos of Ever Diadem, clear as could be I heard the bow watch crewman shout out “Foto!” so I took one, will put it on the web, and whoever he is, he may or may not some day stumble upon it.
3. Act. Pulverize procrastination. But realize that running in competition with procrastination is triage. Some things will not get done first . . . might never get done at all, and those priorities could be fine. But act on what you want and need. Fred Trooster took this foto in Hellevoetsluis, downstream from the port of Rotterdam, last spring. Bedankt, Fred.
4. Smile. Whoop and overwhelm weltschmerz. I have my sources for smiles, and I go there when I need them to survive. It sounds silly maybe, but I’m as committed to balance in humor as in diet, work . . . .
5. Give. Give yourself, your humor, your urgency. Overwhelm some random person with your cheer. And although it’s not the motivation, whatever you give comes back many fold and in unexpected ways. Account ledgers, though important, tell only half-truths.
6. Relax. When I was under 30, I confused sleep with wasted moments. Relaxation allows wisdom to seep in. Here near the headwaters of the Hudson aka Muh-he-kun-ne-tuk, a few minutes of nestled into the sandy bank rearrange priorities and expel dark humors.
The feline below left, less than six months old, gallops around the house more pony than cat. But it sleeps up to 18 hours a day. So does the 30-year-old parrot. Relaxation, re-energizing, a rovering spirit remain as much the prerogative of the over-60 as the under-30. Gallivanting becomes the parrot as well as the cat, although each does it differently.
So, where do I go from here? Tomorrow, my actual 21,900th day I don’t post. I work a 12-hour day at the bread/butter job. But in the breaks, I think of post-60 gallivants. Here are six that occur to me immediately.
1. the Panama Canal. It’d be just like sitting along the KVK, and I’d even see some of the sixth boro regulars, I’d bet.
2. the Erie Canal. I’ve motored it, but I have a 10-foot Hunter Liberty that I’d love to sail from Lyons to the sixth boro.
3. a freighter cruise. I’ve never been interested in big cruise ships. In my early 30s,I took a thrilling 60-hour ferry from Jedda to Port Suez.
4. the Amazon, and while in Brasil, I might stop in at Bebedouro. Maybe the freighter cruise could be up to Port Newark with holds full of orange juice.
5. the Mississippi, at least from St. Louis to the Gulf.
6. the Rhine/Rhone Canals from the North Sea to the Med.
So much for a list. Tomorrow some of these might differ. So what . . .
Here are some more lists . . mostly young people.
I’d planned something different for today, but then my inbox started to fill. And it makes me happy to feel a community building here. So . . . thanks all for reading and sending fotos and links. I wanted to go out taking fotos, but a pile of tasks told me to stay home.
First, Ann O’Nymous sent me a link to Tugboat Tales, a fabulous documentary made by the late Bart Lawson back in 1991. This first-rate documentary is divided into parts one, two, and three. A click gets you to youtube.
Next, harbor photographer extraordinaire John Watson went to check progress on Ambrose, and discovered the drydock had been floated out and reoriented 180 degrees, with the lightship on board. That would have been a sight to behold.
Next, from Allen Baker, this foto of a lightship undergoing restoration two hundred miles . . . downeast . . . well, in Boston. It’s LV-112, which last appeared in this blog almost two years ago. That info back in 2010 was passed along by Matt of Soundbounder. Check this link (Thanks to Rick) for many more fotos of LV-112.
As I said, I stayed inside this morning, chomping at the bit because Orange Star was headed out. Had I realized that her sister vessel was coming in and that they’d cross not far from the Narrows, I would have “busted out.” Nothing could have kept me inside. Then, I got an email from bowsprite informing me that Orange
Babe Wave had come into port, and I was beside myself. At which point . . . .
I got an email from John Skelson, with attached fotos of Orange Wave!!! If you’re new to this blog, I’m a self-professed orangejuiceaholic. Here, thanks to A. Steven Toby is a link to the technology of these juice ships.
And since this post has become a gallery of other people’s fotos, here’s another from Allen Baker. A little self-disclosure here: I moved to the Boston area in the mid-1980s. One day in 1986, I was walking near the Science Museum and saw two very tired tugboats there, Luna and Venus. The sad sight drew me in. To see these beauties in such an utter state of disintegration broke my heart. I thought both were doomed. Venus was clawed into matchsticks in 1995, and Luna very narrowly escaped the same fate. Read the much nuanced story here. Luna dates from 1930, the same year as W. O. Decker. I hope to see Luna again soon; too bad I didn’t carry a camera around back in 1986.
And Decker brings the post to South Street Seaport, which I’m thrilled isexperiencing early springtime, frigid temperatures notwithstanding. Also, if you’ve been in NYC recently, you know it’s been a snowless winter so far; this foto was taken last year. I’ve always know the vessel below as Helen McAllister, but now I’m embarrassed to note that she’s also the ex-Admiral Dewey and Georgetown. I’d never realized that. Further, she came off the ways into the KVK in 1900, built at the same yard that produced Kristin Poling! And this raises two questions: is Helen McAllister that last power vessel of that yard still extant? And, does anyone know of fotos of Helen McAllister that show her working during OpSail 1992. Which raises the question . . . am I the only one NOT hearing talk of planning for OpSail 2012 New York?
Both Ambrose and Admiral Dewey/Georgetown/Helen McAllister are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
It’s cold outside and tomorrow should be colder, so you could click on every link above and drink some hot tea. Did I complete many of my tasks today? No, but I had a ball with these fotos. Watching all three parts of Tug Tales will take about a half hour, but it is well worth the time.
Thanks to Ann, John, Allen, bowsprite, Steven, and John for fotos and info.
My parents called December 31 “oud jaardag,” if I spelled that right . . . meaning “old year’s day.” I like the idea of a “look back” day, a last chance to catch up, my opportunity to TRY to catch up on the social part of blogging. Thanks to all of you who send me fotos from hither and yon, a wealth of images that sometimes overwhelms. Please continue to do so in 2012, although I can’t always keep up.
Foto below from Rene Keuvelaar from the many steams of the Rhine delta. Translation is “happy holidays and a great new year.” Maybe someone can identify the steam tug.
Foto from John Watson less than two weeks ago, Charles D. McAllister assisting Centurion out to Mighty Servant 1 for transport to Nigeria.
Foto from Richard Wonder of the supply vessel Twin Tube, a Blount-built harbor boat.
Foto compliments of John Kopke of 36500, the most-rescuing 36′ lifeboat ever, famous for its rescue in February 1952 (the month and year I was born) of crew from tankers Fort Mercer and Pendleton. Here are some more.
Thanks to Kenneth Bailey . . . Algoma Discovery, 1987-launched laker, heading through the Detroit River less than two weeks ago.
My foto from yesterday on the Tennessee River, the 1926 steamer-turned hotel-hoping to return to passenger trade . . . Delta Queen. I’d love to see fotos of her when she worked the West coast and when she traversed the Panama Canal to access the Mississippi waterways.
And a foto by my sister . . . she insisted I pose in this foto of the SS William Clay Ford pilot house. Thanks, sister.
Twelve fotos for old year’s day. Thanks to all for sending me fotos. If you sent one and I didn’t use it, either remind me or blame my absence of imagination or my disorganizational skills. Resolution matters, too; at least 400k is needed. If you send a foto, please tell me immediately if I have permission to use it and how to attribute it.
I’m off from Atlanta area to Wilmington, NC and then Newport News in less than 24 hours. Happy 2012! Bonne annee.
Here’s my post from a year ago. Where HAS the time gone? A joy of doing this blog is to go back, and sometimes as with this one, my memory–or is it my gut–recalls the eagerness of that morning 365 days ago. What I pursued then I still pursue . . .
Can you spot anything in the foto below that suggests the time of year? Answer follows. All fotos look better if you enlarge by doubleclicking on them.
Oyster Creek reenacts a moment with the Bayonne Bridge that mimics a Fractor scene (see my “masthead” atop each post) from five years back.
L. W. Caddell struts out into the KVK all in a day’s work that
shows off its bollard pull.
Mary Alice (ex-Gulf Sword, 1974) sashays back to the work on the channel near Shooters. I wonder, given how long the deepening of the sixth boro channels has been ongoing and how from the surface, the water looks unchanged, has anyone heard of a moniker for this project akin to “big dig,” a Boston phenomenon?
Behemoths like NYK Romulus, relatively small given the world fleet, benefits from this dredging. Notice the red/green detail nearly in the center of this foto. Might that be on-deck controls for a bow thruster?
In her last moments of this leg of her never-ending journey, she’s assisted by Gramma Lee T Moran and
S-curve. Notice in the distance, where on Shooters shore the dredging currently focuses. If you missed this post showing Shooters a century ago, click here. If you want a comparison then and now, click here.
So, did you find the seasonal reference in the top foto? Here’s another look . . . move your eye toward the bell in front of Amy Moran‘s raised wheelhouse. Piney branches. I like it. And I’m thrilled to see Ice
Babe Base back in town.
Saturday I hit the road for the south, Chattahoochee watershed, then Cape Fear, then maybe Newport News. Tomorrow I may put up some road fotos not yet used from the last trip.
Thanks for reading. Peace, friendship, prosperity, and imagination to all of you. Health too.
All fotos by Will Van Dorp, today. . . . first day of winter . . . 63 degrees in the sixth boro!
There’s a link a bit later to a post from last winter. I hope you check it. For now I’ll say Robert Frost was on the money here.
Here’s what Robert Frost wrote, as a paraphrase of Dante Alighieri: “Some say the world will end in fire, Some say in ice. From what I’ve tasted of desire I hold with those who favor fire. But if it had to perish twice, I think I know enough of hate To say that for destruction ice Is also great And would suffice.”
Notice the Village Voice icon has disappeared. Tugster didn’t get their nod. Thanks for voting. Although it would have been nice to win, winning is not why I blog.
You know the song; I decided to adapt it like this.
“On the first tides of Christmas, my true loves spoke to me . . . of propellers in a parts tree.
On the second tides of Christmas, my true loves gave to me, two honey boats, and . . .
… three schooner sails, . . .
… four ferry boats, . . .
… seven short sea shippers, . . .
… ten dredgers digging, . . .
All fotos by Will Van Dorp.
Same idea only different . . . check out frogma.
Well, maybe not that different, since I’m not reinventing myself. But enjoy these fotos, and while looking at them, fugure out where you’ve seen this tug before on this blog. Look carefully. It took me about 30 seconds to recognize the red tug below as a more pristine version of a tug that appears here periodically. Fotos were taken in the 1980s by Seth Tane, who generously shares them here.
In its current state, this tug, using the same name, has considerably more equipment on board. What hasn’t changed is the profile of the Palisades in the background of some of these fotos, taken in or near Hastings-on-Hudson, NY.
A major change in the tug relates to visibility; the portholes would make me claustrophobic. However, since the mystery tug was built on the Great Lakes, maybe portholes conserve heat better in winter. Tug Daniel A. White, below left, has more conventional glass. Anyone know what has become of Daniel A. White?
If you guessed Patty Nolan, you were correct. Here’s her current work page, showing her original form. Click on the following links for a sampling of Patty Nolan fotos from the past few years, like modelling 2011 summer beach fashion, at work in the East River, moving snail-like with house, and finally . . . for now . . . Patty Nolan outlaw fashionista.
Thanks much to Seth for these fotos from the early 1980s.
Below is a foto (poor quality) that I took in December 2000. I clearly had forgotten how barren the Jersey City shore just north of the Morris Canal looked a mere 11 years ago, almost reminiscent of a desert town. This foto was among a batch my sister handed me at Thanksgiving, but those foto gave me
an idea. Maybe you have fotos in a drawer, a shoebox, and album, etc. that show some part of the sixth boro and/or vessels there. And if I may so brazen, tugster would LOVE to see any fotos you might come across and are willing to share.
Here was Something Different 4.
Here was #1 of this series, started earlier this month, featuring quite random fotos and thoughts. Here’s a shot looking toward Shooters and Elizabeth, NJ. In the foreground just off the street and that bell tower and to the left of the cement silo are three . . actually four identical brown brick structures; the fourth one is mostly obscured by the silo. I have no clue, although they look like pylons to a structure long gone. Help?
In a bit, I’m hitting the road . . . gallivant time, so many places to see along so much highway and way too little time. The blog may vacate for a few days . . . But on the 26th, whether I post or not, this blog has its fifth anniversary. This is post #1608 in the past 1825 days. Post #1 was prompted by my huge stone-bellied muse. Thanks so much for reading; I’ve had a blast. I’m eager to get gone and then get back.
PS: If you haven’t voted or asked a half dozen friends to vote for this blog as “best neighborhood blog” and “best photo blog” (#5 and 24), please do so now. A few of you have written to say you like thinking of the sixth boro as one of the overlooked neighborhoods of NYC, the place said to be comprised of five terracentric boros.
These fotos come from Jason LaDue, who knew her while he was growing up in the vicinity of the Soo. Foto below by Troy Wilke. Jason writes, “That rare (and large) Kahlenberg smoked like no other but always delivered the power. I was onboard her several times when moving saltwater vessels to and from the Algoma Steel facility in Sault Ste Marie, Ontario.”
Next year 2012, Grouper has a one CENTURY anniversary, 100 years of life, the last decade and a half of which she seems in a coma. Here was my original Grouper post, followed by 67 comments!
Many thanks, Jason. I plan to use more of your fotos soon.
Uh . . . I miscalculated and got no new fotos of cutter Eagle today, but John Watson made a smart choice
and got these . . . . Bravo, John! Check out this Eagle/Horst Wessel crew reunion blog. And thanks to PortSide NewYork, this info on visiting hours this weekend aboard Eagle at Pier 7 Brooklyn Marine Terminal . . . Today . .. . 2 — 5 pm, Saturday . . . 1–7pm, and Sunday . . . 10 am–7 pm.
1) . . . Name the four sister training barques. Answer follows.Still, serendipity gave me other fotos for another day. Instead, enjoy a few more Eagle I took yesterday . . . sans ceremonial escort boats and with some facts about the vessel.
2. Eagle was built in 1936, placing it as second oldest.
3. It was transferred to US ownership in May 1946 and sailed to the US in June of the same year by a joint German/American crew. Point of entry to the US and disembarkation of the German members of the crew happened at Camp Shanks, more or less across from Yonkers. Does anyone know of fotos of Eagle headed up or down the Hudson in 1946?
4. It downed three Soviet planes and one German “friendly.”
5. Racing stripe was added in 1976.
6. I don’t know which–if any–of the Blohm + Voss training barques have NEVER visited New York harbor.
The two fotos below show a plaque in what used to be Camp Shanks. Vessel in the distance below is Wanderbird, also
All fotos by Will Van Dorp, who took these fotos of Eagle five years ago. Thanks a bundle for the fotos from this morning, John.
Finally, the other Blohm + Voss vessel in New York harbor is Peking, languishing in South Street Seaport limbo. Peking is 377′ loa x 46 beam’ x 16′ draft; compared with Eagle‘s 295′ x 31′ x 17.’
Click here to read the reminiscences of Emil Babich, who crewed aboard Eagle in June 1946 for Eagle’s FIRST arrival in the Hudson on its way to Camp Shanks.