Sunday, August 9, 2009

The Wee Captains - Wee Hate Mystic

Wee Hate Mystic!

The Wee Captains bid us depart from Block Island after a wild two nights! The first night the good ship Paradox was rafted up, far from the docks! The second night, our ship was brought next to the docks so the electric cord could be extended.

With good weather planned, tho a risk of storms, the Wee Captains bid farewell to Block Island and the fair lasses of Rhode Island! On to Mystic, CT, the ancient home of the Mariner!

And so we went!

It was a hard journey. We were chased by storms the entire way! Make ready the canvas, lest we get wet, cried the Wee Captains!

The Wee Captains, in consultation with the Captains of the other ships, were in a quandry. No-one could take the whole flotilla. They chose to dock at the Mystic River Marina. It was a nice enough place, but the weather was awful! The good ship Paradox was next to last to dock. We arrived in just enough time to tie up before the driving rain came! It was so bad, that we could not see the tip of the boat from the companionway!

The Wee Captains told us to close up ship, real tight! They had plans for us! Work they said! Tidy up! We have captains chores to do! And they went about their Captainly business watching Captain Cailloux! Mr. Mailman was overseeing it all!

The Wee Captains saw that there was a lull in the rain. Their friends from White Caps went to Mystic Pizza (and kindly got takeout for the crew of Paradox). The crew managed to get to the "club room" of the Mystic River Marina where they played with ping pong rackets (no balls) and found an ancient fire-place! The fire-place was just the right size for the Wee Captains to hide inside!

The Wee Captains were not a fan of Mystic! Perhaps, if the rain were not so bad, and if they had seen the Mystic Seaport Museum and Aquarium, they might have thought better of it!

Come morning, the Wee Captains cried in unison: On to Essex! We know we will have fun in Essex!

The Wee Captains, Summer Cruise 2009

The Wee Captains Take Block Island!

The Wee Captains took Block Island by Storm! They arrived at the docks ready for action! They comandeered a cab and demanded to be taken to Old Harbor. They were kind to the cab driver, as he was a school teacher, and they felt sorry for him.
First stop, big game hunting! They boys checked out the big game available on the island! Buffalo and Kangaroos and Emu's and Camels! There were a smattering of other game for the Wee Captains to view. The pigs and goats and birds! Ahhh, the birds!

The Wee Captains decided to check out the island for themselves. So they climbed into the carriages and yelled, Mush! Onward! Take us back to the docks!

Galley Slave and Winch Wench were allowed to quench their thirst a a local hamburger joint overlooking the ferry landing. They quickly back to pushing as the Wee Captains rode in style, all the way back to Champlins!

The Wee Captains take Block Island!

On To Block Island!

The Wee Captains determined that we should make all good course for Block Island, Rhode Island! The weather was fine and the winds fair. There were rumors of maidens fair upon the docks! Damsels, to fall under the spell of the very handsome Wee Captains!

With much determination the winch wench and the galley slave met with the dock hands. It was planned, the maneuver out of the slip and into the fairway! Galley slave at the helm (and guided by the unseen hand of David Kass), The good ship Paradox came out of the slip and swept stealthily into the fairway! There was a round of applause and cheers as Paradox left the docks!

First stop, Brewers gas dock in Greenport! Docking was made and fuel taken on board. Paradox turned in the little basin and put-putted out into the waters between Shelter Island and Greenport!

Avast Ye! cried the Wee Captains! A meeting at the helm was called. Galley slave was left to mind the wheel and winch wench was called forth! The Wee Captains met at the helm to plan our trip to Block Island.

Fair weather and fine winds they cried! On to Block Island and make no haste!

The main was hoisted and the Jib pulled out! We sailed for Block Island on a beam reach! Wiinch wench was given a well deserved break and allowed to come up on deck for a breather!

The winds picked up and the weather started getting worse! The last hour of the trip to Block was a mad dash before 20 knots winds, with gusts to 25 kts! The Wee Captains let it be known that they could not drink their milk in such conditions! The wind would have to be put down or the boat docked without haste!

Unfortunately, the winds and the docks did not cooperate! The good ship Paradox circled the bay for 3 hours before being offered dockage at the noted Champlins Marina. She was rafted out - 9th boat out of 10!

Once the boats in party were docked, the fun began! Party with the Wee Captains!

The Wee Captains, Summer Cruise 2009

Greenport! Our start for the sea!

The Wee Captains met their fine ship, Paradox III at the docks in Greenport. Load the boat they cried as the galley slave and winch wench worked to unload the van and move The Wee Captains things onto the great sailing ship.

Tied up we were, to a dock. A public dock at that! Makes me reminisce about sailing days of old....but that is another story!

The wee captains had enough of their long van ride and were anxious to get their sea legs under them! But they had reservations at Greenport for 2 nights! So they waited and waited. The first night, they dined at Claudio's with the other captains of the fine ships: Whitecaps, Breathless, Joint Venture, Cat's Paw and with Celerity - The Hummels of great fame!

A good time was had by all!
The next day, the Wee Captains took to the town! Pillage and Burn the town they cried! But they settled for ice-cream at a local establishment. They met Perry and Jean in the town! It was a hot day, but the Wee Captains are hardy men and they stuck it out!

The Wee Captains felt sorry for galley slave and winch wench and agreed to lend a hand in carting the land vehicles back to the ship!

The Wee Captains, Summer Cruise 2009

Aye, The Wee Captains set forth yet again on another cruise. The winch wench at their beck and call. And their humble servant, the galley slave, at their mercy. The Wee Captains provisioned the boat with little grog but much in the way of the Wee Captains Delights: 3 gallons of fresh milk, 6 cartons of parmalot and a case of condensed milk, just in case. Plenty of chips and cookies and mac and cheese! Hot dogs and white american cheese! Grog and slop for the crew!

The Wee Captains bid the galley slave meet the hired captain at the docks and help them shove off. It was an early morn, sunrise in fact, when the galley slave met the hired captain and hired hands at the docks. I gave the keys and the lines to the hired help and bid them farewell! Meet you in Greenport, they said. And they motored off!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Summer Cruise to Block Island

"Shanghai'd again" I screamed as I was pushed into the van for the drive to Stonington, Ct. The inglorious mode of travel, on land, rather on water, was but the first punishment for your loyal galley slave. "Catch up with the boat!" screamed the winch wench. It seemed that the good ship Paradox III had been taken from her home port by an as yet unknown captain and brought to Connecticut for a possible run at Block Island.
The vehicle arrived and galley slave and winch wench were thrown to the ground. "Out, out, grab the gear and get to the boat..." screamed the little captains! "Don't forget the bottles and the gear! Bring plenty of food and grog for the crew! Bring the freshies! Lots of freshies!"

Galley slave and winch wench struggled under the weight of the supplies for the little captains. Eventually, all was safely stored below. Lo and behold, the good ship did not sink under the weight of the additional supplies!

The little Captains directed us to meet with the crews of Whitecaps, Breathless and Joint Venture for our sail to the ends of the earth!

The first night was spent at the gas dock in Stongington, Ct. A glorious place to sail and reside!

No single picture could describe the land-side glory! A tasty respite was found at the Dog Watch Cafe, shared with fellow cruisers.
The next day, a sloop arrived with sad tidings. Block Isle was full, no moorings or slips to be had! 6 foot swells were found that day. Quickly, our travel plans were changed and we moved down-river to the Stonington Ct Yacht Club. Another glorious destination, again in Ct.
Dockmaster John was quick to assist with line and lore! The crew was fed at a nearby restaurant. A tour of the Yacht club proved it to be seaworthy and worthy of a return trip!
Another night at dock, and the little captains declared: "Enough of this Stonington! Off to Westbrook Ct we go!" And with that order, galley slave and winch wench worked the lines and brought the stout vessel into Fisher's Island sound and on to the next port. As the ship passed the light, a cry was let out! "Hazzah, to be on the move again!"

At Westbrook, at a dock, the most amazing light show could be seen among the heavens! Lightning here and thunder there. It seemed a cannon battle was blazing around us!

From Westbrook, the little flotilla made for Port Jefferson in NY. Most of the boats in the flotilla left early, but the little captains demanded a rest. "Why shove off so early? why not stay and enjoy a bottle and nap? A freshie or two would not be bad!"

Atleast the little captains permitted the galley slave and the winch wench to put out the sails and air them out! An hour spent at sail was like a week on vacation!
The little captains did not know the weather. Lo and behold, it fell upon the galley slave to dodge one thunder storm and another on the way to Port Jefferson! We hugged the CT coast for safety before darting into the sound and trying out luck against the storms headed for Port Jefferson.
We had a glorious gun battle with the Pt. Jeff ferry, but retired as the ferry brought more guns to bear than the little Paradox III. The little captains did not want to give up the fight, but galley slave slinked away during nap time!

"To the steam room, to the steam room" cried the little captains! Alas, there was to be no steam for galley slave and winch wench! The little captains craved steamed lobster and fried fish. Mere fried fish was saved for the lowly winch wench! A walk around the port showed the sceevy nature of such a port! Fisticuffs and knife fights abounded among the slovenly denizens of the port! A night on the mooring was uneventful.....

In the early morn, the whole flotilla, with the addition Cat's Paw and crew, made way for achorage in Cold Spring Harbor. The sail to the Harbor was pleasant and calm. Few scattered winds paved the way for the little flotilla. Only when the boats reached the mouth of the harbor did the wind arrive, but too late for sails!

Paradox rafted up to Cats Paw for victuals and grog! The little captains demanded grog and feed! Bottles all around they cried! After returning to the Paradox, Cats Paw let go and Paradox took up position on the hook in the midst of the fleet. The galley slave was left to mind the anchor as the crew went to sleep.

Early morning proved to be a glorious day!

The trip back to Home port was a slow passage. We beat the storm into port. We managed to dock the boat and unload the little captains before the great storm hit.
And so ends another chapter of our cruising days......................................

Monday, July 7, 2008

Mutiny's Afoot

"Mutiny!" they cried. "Mutiny!" "No more beatings, the grog is too weak and there be no wenches for the crew!"
That's what the rest of the crew screamed as they left the decks and the bridge and ran below!
They left me, lowly galley slave, at the helm to man the ship. The crew cornered the winch wench in the galley and demanded bottles of milk! Milk? on a long voyage?
Well, the winch wench fooled them into taking powdered formula instead.
Drunk with the formula, the crew screamed and yelled a bit more, then quickly fell to sleep.
I, lowly galley slave, managed to get the boat back to port, before they awoke and disembarked!
Pics and more to follow.