Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Let Rigging Games Begin!

Another week in Camden, and I am enjoying it even more. At the end of last week we finally finished painting the boat which is good because she looks almost perfect now, but it was a lot of work with nasty paints. We finally started rigging sails and in three days of work have only the mizzen-topsail left (Started with the Jib, Stay-sail, Jib-topsail, Main, Mizzen, and today the Maintop). Our crew is legit. We are counting down to sailing as we will be boarding for our first trip on Friday. I have no idea what sort of group we will be taking, but I am sure it will be fun and nice to finally be sailing.

Speaking of sailing, a few of the photos here were taken while sailing "Wally", one of our small rowboats that has a sail-rig. The mate, the cook and I took her out for a couple hour trip to the outer harbor the other night for a sunset cruise to the sound of a band playing in the harbor on a barge. It was pretty sweet. The next day was even windier and although Wally isn't the smartest sailor ever, it is of course nice to finally be sailing again! There were two daysailors, smaller schooners in the harbor, one of which (The Olad) I think can be seen behind Curtis Island in one of these pictures.

Another picture is of a hike that we did in Fernald's Neck, a state protected wildlife-esque area. After hiking there (not very far, only a mile or two before a picnic and beer), I realized that I need a kayak someday! Hopefully one with a sailing rig!

Things are brilliant here, I could not really ask for anything else!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

First post. From Camden, Maine

So I finally am here. The drive went well, surprising well. Nothing broke on the new Subaru, and the GPS (thank you Caleb) never led me astray. After much waiting, anxiety over getting a job, finishing school etc., I have arrived in Camden and as Captain Dave suggested, I may never actually leave. When I first met the boat she was up on the hard at the Rockland yard (about a 15 minute drive by car/hour drive by boat). While it was interesting to see her out of the water, I am glad to be in picturesque Camden.

The town is beautiful, especially the other boats. When I climb out of the foc'sle in the morning, I see 9 other tall ships + Angelique + countless other beautiful old boats. I am told that there are more to come. The town is ancient New England, and many of the buildings probably date back to its founding I think in the late 1700s early 1800s. I was thinking about it yesterday, and this town feels so right because it feels so clean. Even though there are many old buildings, many of which look almost warn and when the tide goes down there is obviously ocean goo over all the rocks etc., this place is exactly how it is supposed to be. Everything seems to fit, and even though I am currently covered in multi colored paint (mostly green bottom paint), I feel clean as well.

The boat is great, the crew and captain even better, a very "chill" atmosphere in which much still gets completed. I thought I had a good work ethic until I came here; I have to push myself to keep up with the other crew, which is a relief (much better than the alternative). With so many other tall ships, the sailing community is large, and I have already met probably 20 others sailors, making for some fun evenings at (S)Cuzzy's, the local schooner bum bar. As of now, most of the work has been sanding and painting three tenders (Capi, Obi, and Wally) as well as Angelique. We painted her hull yesterday, an arduous venture as the paint is basically glue. Other small varnishing projects etc. are in store for the next two weeks before sailing actually begins.

The weather has been pretty good, a good mix of sun and clouds, perfect temperature at about 60, and just a few small rain showers. I am fortunate to surprisingly have today and tomorrow off, and will be planning some adventures for the next two days. There is a "mountain" or large hill, called Mt. Battie which I think I am going to hike tomorrow, as it apparently has a perfect view over the harbor and town, and is basically required if you are going to be living in Camden.

It has gotten sunny outside, and sitting in this library chair I can feel the weaves that happen when one is gaining their "sea-legs" again, so it is time for more exploration.

(And for all you Philosophy types, you will be happy to know I am continuing my studies, as I recently bought Confucius' Analects.)