The sailing continues to be good. After the birthday party, we left Mystic with a quick overnight in Fishers Islands West Harbor and caught a great morning tide in The Race across to Gardiner's Bay and Sag Harbor. When looking at the chart, it is deceptive how much water lies between the two limbs of the "fish tail" that ends Long Island. We had a great sail all the way into the mooring field at Sag Harbor.
We spent three nights at the anchorage side by side with the rich... and richer, and, as my mom commented, "bringing down the average." The highlights at Sag Harbor were, of course, the Sag Harbor Whaling Museum with an excellent new and well-researched exhibit on the depiction of whaling in film. From the first silent movie sponsored by the city of New Bedford and shot during an actual whaling voyage in 1923, to the 2016 In the Heart of The Sea, based on the book by Nathanial Philbrick about the fatal voyage of the Essex. Placards went into great depth on the making of ten or so films, including four depictions of Moby Dick, the first two taking great liberties with the story (for example, Ahab survived and in the end he "got the girl" (what girl?).)
The museum had an excellent history of Sag Harbor, once home to more vessels than those in New York City. It was a whaling mecca. The natives used the whales that washed ashore as did Dutch and English colonists. One day, someone said, "Let's get in a small boat and go get one of those whales passing by." The New England whaling industry rose and fell and in the end, with so much overfishing, it took up to four years of around-the-world voyages to fill a whaling ship. Towns like Sag Harbor struggled and tried many different business models (Sag Harbor was where Bulova watches were once made.) Now, like many towns on the coast, tourism is their life blood, but honestly, these chatzky and women's clothing stores are becoming pretty homogenous, so how long can that last?
Later on the first night, we went to see the play "Dial M for Murder." Norma recognized the leading man as the assistant from the series Madame Secretary. Since neither of us had seen the movie, we did not know the twists and turns. We had fun comparing notes with some fellow theater-goers during intermission about why so-and-so did this-and-that and what they were trying to accomplish. It was a very good show performed by top-notch actors and fit in nicely with our habit of supporting the arts and humanities in these small harbor towns .
The next day we went to see the latest Raiders of the Lost Ark movie. It was a nice way for them to wrap up the series. It is impressive how they were able to use AI to de-age Harrison Ford. If you have seen him in the recent 1923, a Yellowstone prequal, you would know what he really looks like. However, like Robert Redford, Harrison makes getting older more dynamic and interesting, not eye candy, but adventurous.
We left Sag Harbor and sailed around to the north side of Shelter Island and dropped the hook for lunch at Sunset Beach. It was a really crazy place on Sunday, July 2nd with power-boaters screaming all around and crowding together in an anchorage with a gradient that went from the shore to 80 feet of depth in 200 feet of width. We pulled up the hook after lunch and motored across to Pipe's Cove for a dip using our water toys and a more peaceful night. We even had time to collect sand and row into a lovely marsh pond with geese and an osprey nest with a squealing osprey.
On Monday July 3rd, we again caught an very favorable tide across The Race and sailed an average of 7.5 knots over the ground back to New London where the boat is as we write this on the 4th. New London's harbor entrance is graced by one of the classiest lighthouses ever--a school house red building nestled in the center of the channel entrance. It looks nothing like Annapolis' famous screw pile Thomas Point lighthouse, but it certainly looks gracious and classy.
Now after 4 months living together on the boat, we started looking more closely at our surroundings and thinking about new provisions and storage. We managed to clean and defrost our freezer and fridge and then went to Ivan's girlfriend Melissa's home for a fantastic cookout and home fireworks display, choreographed and narrated by her12-year-old daughter, Annie.
Tomorrow, the 5th, we will likely head back to the Mystic River near Mystic Seaport and do some much-needed provisioning in preparation of the arrival of our son Adam and joining the Salty Dawgs Rally in Essex for the trip up to Maine. Stay Tuned!