The tall ships arrived in Philadelphia yesterday, setting off all sorts of wonderful memories. The pictures in the paper of rigging and billowing sails and nimble crews took me right back 15 years, to Australia's own Bicentennial celebration, which included two special sailing vessel events.
Sydney Harbour is, to my mind and most experts' minds, the most beautiful harbor in the world. It's geographical setting is without peer and the Opera House gives it cosmopolitan dash. A perfect setting for the drama of tall ships.
The five of us - Mike & Kerry, Scott & Karen, and "Nan" - packed up a picnic and found a great spot on Farm Cove. We had an excellent view of the harbor. I don't remember how many ships were there, but then I was pretty stunned by the majesty of it all. The ship from Argentina stands out in my mind - it had at least 5 rows of sail on each mast. "Awesome" really is the best word to describe it.
We were there to see them off on their way. Oh, the sight of those great majestic ships working their way out of the harbor, past The Heads, to the open sea. If I could find the words to describe the images in my mind I would, but I cannot.
The other time we packed up a picnic and headed to Farm Cove was for the reenactment of tall ships by any stroke of the imagination. They were much smaller, which made them, in some ways, all the more dramatic. Imagine sailing all the way across the world on those smaller vessels. We practically went delirious when one of the ships anchored right in front of us. Any closer and we would have been sharing our picnic with them!
One look at the cover of the Weekend section of the Philadelphia Inquirer and I am a kid of 75 again, a world away, snug with the Down Under branch of our clan, with good food, great sights and a full heart.
Yo ho ho to one and all - Nan Lockhart
I enjoy looking over the names of the "out of town" ships at anchor – right now! - on the Delaware:
>> Picton Castle/ Cook Island (New Zealand)
>> Eye of the Wind/Southampton, U.K.
>> Zenobe Gramme/Zeebrugge (Belgium) - I think they should add an "i"
>> Amerigo Vespucci/Naples
>> N. E. Sagres/Lisbon
>> Stella Polare/ Livorno (Italy)
>> Faire Jeanne/Ontario
>> Dar Miodziezy/Gydnia (Poland)
>> Libertad/Buenos Aires - could this be the same one I saw??
And the "hometown" ships:
>> Gazella Primiero/Philadelphia
>> Kathryn B./Rockland Harbor (Maine)
>> Black Pearl/Shelton (Connecticutt)
>> USS Stout/Norfolk
>> Niagara/Erie (Pennsylvania)
>> Grand Nellie/St. Thomas (U.S. Virgin Islands)
>> Pride of Many/Georgetown (Mass.)
>> Jolly Rover/Philadelphia