Friday, June 22, 2007


South Burlington, Vermont
N 44.47 W 73.16

Yesterday morning, Libby had her debut as captain on Tarwathie. Believe it or not, even after all this time and all this experience, she had never taken Tarwathie anywhere without me on board.

The mission was to return Tarwathie from Scotia to Lock 7 along the stretch of the Mohawk that I thought so beautiful last week. She also had passengers. John and Mari, our friends from West Charlton, wanted to ride along because they too had never seen the Mohawk from the water. They also brought along their grandson, Adam, who had never been on a big boat before. It made a merry crew. They set off of their short voyage, while I drove ahead in our borrowed car to meet them at the lock. All went well and they arrived on schedule fresh with new appreciation of the hidden beauty of their own home territory.

We tied up Tarwathie to the lock 7 wall to leave her for a week. I'm confident that she should be OK there. Strangely though, I would have felt more confident had we left her swinging on the hook.

This afternoon as we were driving to Vermont, we passed over the crest of the ridge overlooking Ticonderoga, and suddenly the beauty of the Champlain Valley came in to view below us. Oh it was wonderful. It was a day of instability in the atmosphere, with huge cumulus clouds soaring 30,000 feet into the sky. The sunlight lit the white tops of the clouds brilliantly, against the deep blue background of the sky behind them. There was a intense thunderstorm visible in the distance over Camel's Hump. Below us was every shade of green imaginable in the forests and farm lands.

As you can tell from our blogs, we are lovers of natural beauty. We love upstate New York and Vermont in particular because they are such jewels of natural beauty. One thing I must admit is that the beauty in Vermont is best seen from hilltops, not from the surface of Lake Champlain. From the lake you can see the mountains, but from the hilltops you can see both the mountains and the valleys at the same time. Strangely, the lake itself is hidden from view from all but a select few vantage points in Vermont.

We spent the night with our daughter Jennifer and her s. o. Christian. It has been nearly a year since we've seen them so it was great reunion. Jennifer also had good news to tell us. She just landed a new job at Coffee Analysts. The job fits her very well and I'm sure that she'll do well at the tasks. Amazingly, she'll have her office at the spot I've always considered the prettiest I've ever seen for scenery out the window.

Decades ago, I brought my boat to Lake Champlain every October for vacation trips. Back then, as I approached Burlington, I admired the General Electric factory right on the shore in South Burlington. I thought, "Those G.E. managers must have the best view in the world." Looking out their windows, across the widest part of the lake and seeing New York's Adirondack Mountains on the far side. Years later, G.E. sold the buildings to Blodgett Oven Company, and fantastically, my daughter Jennifer got a job there. Now, Coffee Analysts took over the building and refurbished it, and Jennifer will work there once again. I'm very proud of Jennifer and happy for her good fortune.

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