Friday, March 27, 2009
Monday, March 23, 2009
Do you have stories of her construction and launch? Send them plus available photos to firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll publish them on the blog.
Afterward, one the crew members were asking what people’s favorite parts were. My answer at the time was 'Everything.' I wasn’t ready to get off the ship when we docked. Later I tried to break it down to some of my most favorite parts. Hm, lets see...the moment the engine was shut off and the wind took us was the most peaceful and graceful feeling; watching the crew pull rigging; and their quick reactions when something didn’t go quite as planned; their knowledge and history and attention to the guests; the shanty songs from Tiny and Sparkle (which are actually the only names I can remember); and a most special appearance by a sailor who stole me heart w/ 'the best day ever'. As it was, at least one of the best days I’ve had in a very long time.
Kathy doesn't identify the sailor "who stole me heart," but we suspect it was someone close. Kathy offered her thanks to the captain and crew of the Lady Washington. "My gypsy heart is longing to sail away with you all again one day."
If you have a Lady Washington story to tell, recent or from long ago, sent it to us via email@example.com. And don't forget a few snaps!
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Grays Harbor Historical Seaport Authority
712 Hagara St.
PO Box 2019
Aberdeen, WA 98520
I'd like to take this opportunity to show my appreciation of the important work you all do at GHHSA. I was honored last year to crew on both the Lady Washington and the Hawaiian Chieftain, and I've never encountered a more talented, dedicated, and thoroughly wonderful group of people in all my life.
I'd also like to emphasize that the difficult and tireless work you all do is important not only for the history you preserve but for the opportunities you provide to both the public and fellow sailors. Your work changes lives; both through your Youth Adventure programs, your Education programs, as well as through simply supporting and training new sailors.
I know that a lot of your crews are very young and may not recognize it yet, but the life experiences GHHSA offers enrich the souls of everyone who sails aboard. Long after they've moved on, either to others ships or other careers, their time working with the wood and the sea will be remembered as the foundation of a life lived well.
PS: Say hi to Tiny and JB and Liz and Esther and Matt and Rosco and Josh and the other great folks I met while on board.
Thanks, Ken. We'll pass the word.
Monday, March 16, 2009
If you have a favorite photo of hijinks on Lady Washington or Hawaiian Chieftain, send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thursday, March 12, 2009
If you have a favorite photo of the ships to share, send them to email@example.com.
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
In 1999 my mom lived in Eureka, California. This is when my grandma was still alive. The Lady Washington docked there and opened for tours. My mom and my grandma took a tour on the Lady Washington and my mom wrote me a letter, dated 4/15/99. She put pictures and the letter into a bottle and gave it to the captain. I can't remember his name at this time. I did not know anything about this until the captain returned to Aberdeen and called me on the phone. He said that he had a message in a bottle for me and that he was asked to deliver it to me, all the way from Eureka, California. The captain took care of my message in a bottle. I went to the Lady Washington while docked in Aberdeen and picked it up that very day. It will remain a family momento and I will treasure this letter for always.
Jodie promised to send us the photos as soon as she can.If you have a story to share that helps us celebrate Lady Washington's 20 years of changing people's lives, email it (with photos, hopefully) to firstname.lastname@example.org. BTW, if you know the captain's name, please let us know.
Monday, March 9, 2009
4/01/04 (Thurs.) O.K. - So basically on Monday, we started out from San Francisco. It's Thursday, and we're at Bodega Bay for the second day. We hit NW winds at 30+ knots gusts and 11-foot seas at 11 seconds - plus wind waves. Talk about getting the [crap] beat out of us! I was on a night watch, and it got scary. Most of the crew was down w/ sea sickness. I was fine and I even enjoyed the ride! Wrestling with that tiller though, that was really tough. I'm bruised thru and thru. I didn't get scared until our second watch (that would have been the second night out) when both [First Mate] Mindy [Doroski] and [Shopkeeper] Martin [Johansson] were so sick they could hardly stand, and [Engineer Jeremiah] Myuh [Gempler] was working on the pump that broke (the poop pump no less!) and I was on the tiller. I could hardly keep the course. My instructions were "go for NW, but error on the side of land." In the middle of our watch, Mindy had taken two plots where we lost ground. (I think it was six nautical miles in two hours) she woke Capt. Ryan ["Evil" Meyer] and he came up and turned the boat around. What a difference! The tiller still threw us around quite a bit. In the end, even with following seas, we had to have 2 crew on the tiller. By the time I woke up, we were anchored in Bodega Bay.
As I read my own words, they seem entirely too inadequate for the experience I went through. We were all in a kind of fatigued euphoria at the time I was writing this passage. When I remember that watch when we turned around, my toes go cold and my mouth goes dry. I was hanging on to that tiller with every bit of strength I had. Not just physically, but mentally and spiritually too. That tiller was the only thing that kept me on the boat, that kept the boat on course, that kept everyone safe, and I was on that tiller. I didn't rationalize the responsibility, but I felt it. The seas seemed bigger than God, and our boat but a thimble. A deep and terrifying understanding of my own smallness crept into my bones from my feet that night. It's taken a long time for it to percolate into my mind. I'm very glad it didn't start in my brain, or I'm not sure how I would've reacted.
Entwined throughout, within, and between the fear was the most exhilarating, freeing feeling I've ever had. I was riding my sea-steed through fearsome waters that cared not for me - nor could it deny me. I swear (corny as it sounds), I felt the blood of my ancestors waken in my veins, and laugh and sing in terrible, beautiful voices. I was not the first to ride waves like these on a crazy, moonlit night. Someone rode them with me, and thrilled in the memory of being alive. I had a moment when I embraced this feeling, when I welcomed my ancient past, and death was not important. I would never die. We will never die. I knew who I was, for a moment. It's gone now, lost in fear and insecurity and banality. How will I ever get it back?
If you've got a story to tell about your experience on the Lady Washington, even if it's not quite as dramatic, send it to us with photos, if possible, to email@example.com.
Saturday, March 7, 2009
Today, Lady Washington is at Jack London Square in Oakland, and if you have a morning free, she'll be open for good wishes and congratulations from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. We've also got a celebratory Battle Sail scheduled for 2 p.m. More details on our website.
Friday, March 6, 2009
Film student Noah Smith sent us this wonderful video that shows elementary school kids enjoying our educational program in San Francisco. Do you have photos or videos to share? Email them to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We're going to be gathering these memories online and at the dock throughout the spring and summer. The Historical Seaport has also asked a videographer to join the ship at many of her stops in Washington and Oregon and record people telling their personal Lady Washington stories. Many of the anecdotes will appear in a 55-minute video now in pre-production. The video is scheduled for release in early 2010.
Email your stories and photos to email@example.com. We'll put them here on the blog!
Monday, March 2, 2009
Sunday, March 1, 2009
One of our friends, Charlie Bergstedt, sent us this rare video of the Hawaiian Chieftain and Lady Washington duking it out on San Francisco Bay. It's unusual because most video sent to us is shot from one or the other boats. This video was shot from a third boat, which gives it a more objective feel. And it's fun to hear Charlie commenting on the action. Thanks! Charlie also sent us a link to his album of Battle Sail photos.
Do you have video to share? Email a link to firstname.lastname@example.org. We prefer YouTube video. It seems to work better on the blog.
If you have a favorite photo to share, send it to email@example.com.