measure freeboard here

Cutting off the other point of that mooring cleat from the frame was careless, the sort of thing bonafide to irritate my quality control sensitivities. Probably I was hurrying to get one of the Americas’ more distinctive landmarks of kitsch in this stormy panorama before arriving too close to our every-city modern skyline at the same time Oliver Fern huddled in the back of me using the inside of my shirt as a pup tent vestibule for protection from the elements.

September 2018 - Ferry to Home214-2

The vivid yellow Measure Freeboard Here complements the iconic green and white of each Washington State ferry, just so. The stormy sky north over Queen Anne Hill, its remarkable contrast to the sunshine over Elliott Bay, is what caught my fancy this time. Bringing to mind if only I had a dollar for every novel I’ve read which contained a reference to “scudding” clouds I’d be a millionaire by now. Er, really though. Those clouds were scudding across the sky.

6 thoughts on “measure freeboard here

    • Adam and I rode the Hyak on it’s final day of service, Saturday afternoon. Did you know when it was delivered brand-spanking new back in the day, it had to be repainted? She arrived with the green stripe not just covering the bulwarks but also over the main deck windows. Speaking of which, did you ever ride the Kalakala? I got to board the rusting hulk when that fellow from Fremont Foundry arranged for it to be towed down from Alaska.

  1. Nice that you can pretty much escape the city and reach beautiful woods with a ferryboat ride. As a confirmed landlubber, I always enjoy even the most common nautical terms scudding by – mooring cleat, measure freeboard here, hawser, etc. and sometimes don’t feel compelled to look them up, they’re ok just for atmosphere. Looked up the Milwaukee/Muskegon ferry, and definite sticker shock/sinking feeling, it charges for the car and each passenger, +fuel surcharge +port security fee

    • The cross-lake ferry (Lake Michigan) is certainly a different class of transport than the WSF system and yet I still know what you mean about sticker shock and that sinking feeling. The boats here obviously run (if I’m to be technical, despite those vibrating monster engines, those crossings are preciously referred to as sailings, lol) far shorter routes but they’re even considered part of the state highway system and carry thousands of commuters in addition to tourists and weekend warriors. Sans auto, an adult passenger can cross the Sound on one of the shorter sailings for $8.50. As for the Lake Michigan journey, a few years ago for the trip home back to Seattle with Adam via wheels, I’d been feeling quite desperationalized after experiencing a couple of weeks prior, the most grueling exurban/suburban/urban drive in my lifetime, north/south through Chicagoland. The soul-numbing sprawl bookending the city, from Wisconsin it seemed all the way to the Indiana border, was something I swore never to witness again as long as I shall live. When I go there for any reason now it’s only to visit my brother who lives in the central city along the blue line, I take the train right to his house from the airport. No driving allowed. Feet, train or bus, only. At any rate, the splurge on that boat across Lake MI was like the enchanted fairy waving her or his magic wand. Some family members waved to us from their boat out in the lake as the ferry (not the fairy) gathered up steam, that was pretty special. My continental coast-to-coasting is over but I’m looking forward to riding as just a passenger on the Lake MI cross-lake ferry sometime, who can know when but I like the idea. Maybe I can stowaway in someone’s trunk? I’m not very flexible in my old age so it has be something bigger than a Volkswagen Beetle or Prius.

      • I went through Chicago area with a U-Haul last year, and lucked out, not bad at all, but I know it can be an ordeal. I just read that around the Herald Square area of NYC, with 140k workers, the average traffic speed is now <5 MPH, and Macy's wants to add a tower with another 6k workers for the area.
        I'll be promoting my SPDRman app later this year – – we've lined up building owners all around Chicago, and will be creating a network of commuter zip-lines soon. We have to string the cables at night, because we couldn't get the permits, but we've "borrowed" some ComEd vans, and as long as you wear a hardhat and safety vest, nobody asks questions.

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