On Sunday, a weather forecaster predicted (as one was heard to say), “There will be a 100% chance of rain on Sunday.” Well, Sunday on coastal Connecticut waters had its own itinerary, and it was a great day, chilly, but no rain, for us to motor to New London and the famous Thames River, Norma’s hometown river shared with Groton where she grew up. Norma drove us into New London Harbor (mostly) until Allen took over with the swing (not lifting up) bridge into Crocker’s Boatyard. Electricity at last!
A few phone calls later to family (brother, sons, nephew), eldest son Ivan and grandson Michael come for a visit and a nice walk to the comic book store where Michael became the recipient of the latest stuff he and Allen and our NJ grandson Ethan like to read. Later that evening, Norma and Allen had a luscious Thai dinner at Jasmine Thai Restaurant and Sushi Bar and then took a walk to the historic train station and Bank Street, one of the oldest streets along the Thames River waterway. Norma remembers a time when New London was the only real shopping district in both Groton and New London and Waterford. All that has changed enormously over the past 30 years, but Norma’s first alma mater Connecticut College is just a few miles away. While Norma writes this nonsense, Allen is cleaning the small dinghy engine to increase the ease of gas flow and preparing for our next adventure.
Family Fun and Festivities One of the best aspects of a cruising trip like this is that we can find time to be with our eldest son and two of our grandkids, Lina and Michael. Luckily, we got to the Mystic River anchorage outside of Mystic Seaport just in time to be guests at our granddaughter Lina’s 19th birthday dinner at a great new Mexican restaurant, Rio Salado. Good food and fun and gifts for all!
Lina has grown up to be an extremely lovely young woman, now a sophomore in college, who aspires to become a nurse. Thanks to her mom, Jenny, for loaning us a car while we are here, and for my eldest son Ivan for use of his home laundry services and diving gear. (Allen and Michael plan to do a dive to check out the anchors.) Ivan celebrated his daughter’s birthday with us, Nana Beth, and his girlfriend Melissa and her daughter Annie. The next night we made a special bluefish dinner for Ivan and Melissa on Afterglow.
Mystic Seaport: Fellow cruisers, Mystic Seaport is not to be missed if you are heading this way. We bought a family/ grandparent membership so that Ivan can bring the kids and others here for the sundry activities offered including a wonderful Oceanus exhibit, tour of a 1938 fireboat Fireman, the Charles Morgan (the only remaining whale boat in the world today, refurbished, of course), and one of Allen’s favorite things, an informative visit to the Seaport’s planetarium where we learned that the Japanese auto makers joined forces in making Subarus, the star logo on the cars which is representative of the Pleiades (the 7 sisters cluster of stars near Orion’s Belt)—an interesting trivia fact.
Mystic is lovely and the Seaport and the town bring back lots and lots of maritime history and modern day comforts for travelers and cruisers alike. Having lived here for 20 years (and having met and married Allen here), it was a real treat to have the local drawbridge open for us this time. Typically as a resident, I have waited for the bridge to close many a time while my frozen goods and especially ice cream melted in the procession of boats passing through the bridge.
Past the Seaport is a historic cemetery nearby which we anchored for several days and now as Seaport members, used the dinghy dock as we did our sightseeing and provisioning.