Yesterday morning we remembered that Newport is a really cool town, but we can’t loiter anyplace else and still get to Port Washington by the 3rd so we left. During the night Zuiderdam replaced the Sapphire Princess. The same kind of clowns were buzzing around in the tenders but we snuck past them before they could jack with us. How do you say “Ha ha” in Dutch?
At some point between Newport and New London we passed a fort. Doug looked it up, made no notes, forgot what he found, and now we can’t identify it again without more of a commitment than we can muster. He did make at least a mental note, however, when we later encountered Judith Light. Not the Judith Light who played the mom who hired Allyssa Milano’s dad in the quite mediocre show Who’s the Boss?, of course, but the one out on Point Judith.
Just off Fishers Island sits the Latimer Reef Light. And sat scores of fishing boats and sailboats that we had to dodge, although only one showed up in the photo.
Right about then, we heard the Mayday call about a man overboard. For the next hour or so we were riveted by the drama. After a bunch of well-intentioned radio misdirection, we learned that a dive boat reported that two divers had gone down, but only one had surfaced. While the Coast Guard dithered through what seemed to us like incredibly inappropriate red-tape given the need for immediate action, very competent dudes on fishing boats took charge of calculating drift in the strong current and setting up a search grid. Very impressive. Just as we reached a UConn satellite campus, the diver washed up on the rocks back on Fishers Island, apparently safe.
Relieved, we hooked around campus and turned up the Thames River for New London. Wait a second. We get that someone with naming rights pined away for Mother England. That’s fine. But if it’s New London, shouldn’t it be New Thames? Or leave the “New” off altogether. All we ask for is a little consistency.
Actually we also ask for floating docks. New London is a huge boating town, but the wonders of floating docks seem lost on them. Lots of pilings though.
New London is in Connecticut. Connecticut is the last new state we’ll see by boat this go round. Unless we go to the west coast at some distant point in time, the next new state probably will be Wisconsin if we cruise up to Lake Superior, and right now we have no plans to cruise up to Lake Superior, what with The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald and all. So mostly we’re done with new states, but we’ve boated through 23 of them—plus D.C. and 5 Canadian provinces—which we think is pretty solid.
Anyway, we turned to port at the sunk and abandoned sailboat. On our travels we’ve seen a bunch of derelict boats which appear to have gone down in just about the exact spot we need to pass. It always creates a touch of worry.
The great family folks at Burr’s weren’t sure where to put us, but after some visible head-scratching while we sat in the current, they finally told us to slide in along the inside of the fuel dock. So we did.
New London is supposed to be a neat town to explore. The Coast Guard Academy is here. We love the Coast Guard, although they didn’t show too well in the missing-diver incident. But no time to tour the Academy. Or to visit Defender Marine, where one can purchase almost anything boat related. There’s also a submarine base around here. By the time we deployed the fender boards and set lines for the tide swing and walked Oscar and ate dinner, we didn’t have the oomph even to call an Uber.
We’d wanted to stop at some other towns—like Mystic—but all those weather delays finally became an issue. So today was just a long slog through Long Island Sound. Everybody look what’s going down. At least it was a pretty decent day to travel to New York.
To be precise, we’re in Port Jefferson, right near the action. Which is a good thing because Oscar is all about being near the action.
Next stop, City Island. Then Liberty Landing. The East River hopefully will be our last challenging stretch, but we’re excited about passing under the Brooklyn Bridge and seeing some other new New York stuff.