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SEA Currents: Corwith Cramer

May 21, 2018

Right of Way in NY Harbor: Staten Island Ferry

Helen Wolter, Sailing Intern

Study Abroad at Sea

Better view than your average morning

Current Position
40° 50.7’ N x 073° 44.5’ W

Course & Speed

Sunny and hot

Souls on Board

We made it through New York Harbor! With last night's sunset it dawned on us how close we were to land. Our lookout began report lights off the port and starboard bow and suddenly we realized we were sailing straight towards an expansive Long Island. Having heard the light pollution of the city is cause for some beautiful sunsets, all the ship's company stood on the port side and watched as the lights faded through yellows, pinks, and reds, and finally the sun disappeared in the haze on the horizon. Other signs of land became apparent fast; the call for charismatic megafauna rang out not five minutes after C watch began galley clean up (having postponed it for maximal sunset enjoyment) when a carrier pigeon landed on top of the lab. A bird greeted on land with annoyance or disgust was the focus of many delighted gazes on the ship. Two fearless birds later joined students in the lab, making themselves comfortable in the Assistant Scientist's hands and refusing to fly away.

We motored towards the light pollution throughout the night until morning arrived and all who had requested were awoken as we passed under the Verrazano Bridge around 0700. From then on the energy was electric; everyone was quiet but focused, either standing at the bow or around both sides of the deck. Others spent the morning aloft in the rigging, keeping the quarterdeck clear for Cap and our Third Mate to navigate us between bright orange Staten Island Ferries shuttling the commuters to Manhattan. 

Some of us have spent time in New York, for others it was their first time seeing the city, but no matter the sleep deprivation levels, we were all bright-eyed to see Lady Liberty welcoming us home. Past South Street Seaport, past the Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Williamsburg Bridges, past my high school (!) and the UN, past the 59th Street Bridge, we watched as the concrete jungle unfolded before us. We went from seeing only blue to watching 8 million people start their Monday morning. We kept motoring further north until we passed through Hell's Gate, a notoriously tricky turn for big ships, and towards the Throg's Neck Bridge. Our anchorage is in a beautiful Gatsby-esque bay that's overlooking the skyline of Manhattan with the occasional sailboat coming by to check us out. We spent the afternoon doing general ship-shaping to get us ready for port tomorrow, as 9 days at sea (and 4 days in the rain) can result in some untidiness (and smelly towels). Luckily the land weather is much fairer and we can fully dry out in the sun. As for tonight, we'll play some games and music and catch up on some much-needed sleep before our busy morning docking at SUNY Maritime tomorrow.

So goodnight, Mom! I promise I'll get my eight hours tonight.

- Helen

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#1. Posted by Jochen Wolter on May 23, 2018

Liebe Helen,
very nice and well written article! We can picture all your sights and impressions.
Alles Gute für den Resttrip und viel Spass und Erholung auf Cape Cod. Wir freuen uns auf Deine Rückkehr !
Alles Liebe,

#2. Posted by Susan Wolter on May 24, 2018

You’ve now joined the few in this family who survived the passage through Hell Gate: Howard in ‘63 (in the Little Hooker), I in ‘68 ( on the Flying Feather), and Steve in ‘76 (on the Restless & Ready).  Great adventures, all, and we’re so proud of what you and your crew are doing to make the world A Better Place.  Hope you waved when passing UNIS!
I’ll be curious to hear how the passage through Woods Hole compares, and whether you notice a change in the color of the water around Newport.
Love hearing from you, Mom

#3. Posted by Nancy Wendlandt on May 24, 2018

You painted a beautiful word picture of your arrival in New York - I loved it!



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