The Cuauhtémoc is the Mexican Navy’s tall ship. The port of New London, Connecticut was fortunate enough to be one of its stops on the six month voyage they are undertaking.
The ship and crew arrived here in New London on Monday the 2nd of May and departed on the 6th. I read about the arrival in the local papers on Tuesday morning. Woops, too late to see the arrival! Maybe I’ll be able to see the departure.
As you know it’s been quite cool, damp, gray and breezy all week but Friday dawned at least dry so I decided I would chance it. It’s about a 30-45 minute drive from home to either New London or Groton waterfront areas from here so I had time to debate the pros and cons of New London vs Groton. Finally deciding on Groton the question became: where in Groton? There are ample waterfront sites to view the departure but I finally settled on Eastern Point Beach. This location is generally quite crowded on a summer day but yesterday when I arrived there was one pickup truck and one car in the huge lot. Alright EP, pick a parking place. Decision made I settled down to wait….and wait…and wait. At 10:00am three rousing blasts sounded from a horn up river. (The Thames River) It signaled the departure from the pier of the Tall Ship Cuauhtémoc and the next leg of their journey had begun. I believe their next destination is Halifax, Nova Scotia. Bon Voyage! Adios
By that time a goodly number of watchers had arrived, cameras, cell phones, dogs and toddlers in hand. The national flag of Mexico was fully unfurled in in the stiff breeze and the cross pieces on the masts were manned by crewmembers. Sailing down the Thames River and into Long Island Sound. A truly awesome sight. NO! I would never climb one those or any mast to stand on a yardarm? on a swaying ship in a stiff breeze with only a rope to cling to. I’ll let my pictures of the departure speak for themselves. And as a fringe benefit, our very own USCG Barque Eagle was moored at Fort Trumbull.
Leaving Eastern Point Beach I spotted a pair of Canada geese out for a stroll on the roadside. As I got a little closer I spotted five little fuzzy goslings pecking tentatively at the grasses they were walking through. Power steering and good brakes enabled me to get the Buick into a safe place to watch. I wasn’t sure if I should get out of the car or not but decided that if I stayed far enough away and was quiet (and kept my car door open) I’d be ok to take some photos. Getting out of the car my only thought was: “watch where you put your feet, ep”. I sure did.
It continues to amaze me what is available within 30 miles of home, with no need to walk great distances or climb torturous hills, cliffs or mountains or pay huge sums to witness the marvels of nature.
Happy Mothers’ Day to friends across the country.
As a reminder, click on any image and you will be able to view all images as a slide show. ep