Now that I am stationed in Castleton-on-the-Hudson for a few days I can post a couple of musings from our days on the Oswego/Erie Canal. The trip itself will continue on Friday when Sue returns from a conference in Chicago.
Scott is hot and bothered
The State publication version: (shortened by the author)
The Erie Canal – The historic inland waterway winding through scenic central New York State and passing through quaint towns along the way where you can tie up to the city wall. The water way is now home to many happy pleasure boaters traveling both East and West.
This little cruise through the
I’m sorry maybe the tourist information was written with powerboaters in mind. They can go up to the legal speed of 10 mph while we are maxed out at about 6. Powerboats probably also have air conditioning. Maybe we were unlucky as to what towns we chose to tie up to. The State’s version is that all the towns are quaint and you just tie up at any wall. It’s true that you can tie up anywhere but I guess you’d have to think that trailers and carnivals are quaint. Take
Back at the boat it was about 95 degrees with no shade and no breeze. We set up our anchor shade and that helped a little. We also covered the front hatch to try to keep the v-berth cooler. As we sat and read we were visited by a couple of local characters. This is supposed to be part of the quaintness. One was a homeless drunk who seemed pretty harmless. We nodded and smiled to his various mumblings. Best of all though was Bill. Bill looked to be about 19 years old. He had no shirt, underwear pulled way up and giant black bell bottoms slung down about a foot below his underwear. The giant bottoms had long ago frayed away. There was probably room for a couple of sacks of potatoes under those bells. Although he had no shirt on it looked like this was the first time for that this year as he was as white as the belly of a dead fish with about the same muscle definition. The main feature of his musculature would be the two nipple rings he was sporting. Ironically, here we are in the Mohawk valley and sure enough Bill was proudly wearing his orange Mohawk. Bill was as friendly as could be though and he talked with us…on and on. And on and on. He was accompanied by his 4 year old son and his brand new pit bull puppy. He seemed a lot more interested in the puppy but the son did get a hollering at on occasion as he fished off the pier we were tied to. As we listened to Bill we gleaned that he really, really liked video games. He and his ‘fiance’ had an apartment and weren’t really supposed to have a dog. Soon they were getting into a trailer and that was going to be better. Bill said his brother joined the Marines but that he could never work for a guy he couldn’t talk to and he didn’t care for Bush in any case.
Why has Bill stayed with me? You might think Bill is some sort of aberrant American but I think the clothes and Mohawk not withstanding he probably represents the attitudes and thinking or lack thereof of much of
So travel the
OK, this was written on the fly...literally! I was not so crabby later as the canal turned into the Mohawk River and things cooled off a little. Still...