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The recent period of extended summer in the boro means crew are out, enjoying fresh air, like these guys.  I always wonder who these seafarers are, where  they are from, how seafaring has shaped their lives and families, as well as how long they’ve been at sea, both on this voyage and over the course of their lives.  Last year I saw masks, but none are here to be seen.  Are most seafarers vaccinated, I wonder.  Have they received boosters?

This crane operator is bringing the companionway aboard to be stowed

for sea, as two additional crew ensure that it seats properly and can be locked down.  When were these guys last ashore outside a port?

Similarly, as the vessel approaches the terminal crew need to deploy the companionway safely before they shift stations to the mooring lines.  Once moored, the companionway can be used without additional delay.

Forward of the breakwater, this crewman serves as eyes.  A perennial question is what a seafarer thinking of the life and people–like me–on the banks.  During the 1960s and 1970s, there were instances of crew from countries jumping ship, sometimes literally,  to defect.

Local vessels use the balmy weather for training, and

other monitoring activity.

Making up a tow is an activity performed no matter the weather, as are many other duties on the boro.



All photos, WVD, who is mindful that this period of warm, sunny fall can become icy blasts in a week or a month . . ..


When Pegasus moves, you see it and you HEAR it!  At the point I learn how to embed my own  “audio files”  in this blog, the first sound will be Pegasus‘ whistle, here manually controlled by a fearless crewman.


There’s also a line toss dance ’round the bollard.


Wide-brimmed sunhat shades eyes that shift between bridge and bollard.  Watch the crewman’s shadow.


Eye and calculate,


Talk to man on barge and begin the wind-up.


Flake slack over caprail.  Talk some more to man on barge.  Coordinate with shadow.


Release.  Eye falls right over the bollard:  a ringer.


Passengers applaud, then debark.  Excited “til next time’s” get spoken.  And what happens in the barge, you ask . . .


Well, mon ami . .  all all manner of delights, for the barge is the Big Top, Madison Square Gardens, and the Met all rolled into one.  Saturday night I had the pleasure of hearing the Crimson Pirates as they claimed control of Hoboken’s territorial waters–yeah I’ve expounded on pirates before but these are those who sport the black-and-red to foment hilarity, irreverence,  and joy on the high seas.  See Old Salt’s and (of course) Bowsprite‘s posts here.


Ah . . . imagine an audio file here too with “Tom o Bedlam” . . .


. . . “Land Rover” and “Rolling Home.”

aagm3Meanwhile . . . here’s your chance to support your local historic tug and barge, June 3 TOMORROW in Hoboken.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

Unrelated:  Henry sends a message from mid-ocean;  see it also on the NY400 site, left side scroll down a tad.

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June 2023