Friday, July 16, 2010

Jamestown, RI

Click here to see our location in Narragansett Bay

We arrived in Jamestown on Friday, July 9th.  Jamestown is a special place for me (Lynnie) as it was where my Dad’s family lived and our family lived for several years while Dad was in the Navy.  He was assigned to Rhode Island and his first assignment was Fleet Training Group Narragansett Bay, then he was the Officer in Charge of the Naval Communications School (Officer’s short course) and then he served as the Executive Officer of the USS Hale, a destroyer.  We lived there for about 4 years then Dad was transferred to the Pentagon.  We came back to Jamestown every summer for a week’s vacation and for a long time called it home. 

Jamestown is a small village as it is called now, on Conanicut Island, which sits between the RI mainland and Newport.  When I was a kid we used to take the ferry boat to Newport, which was pretty cool, but now they have the Newport bridge.  Anyway, as we cruised into Narragansett Bay, which Jamestown overlooks, and it was thrilling as I’ve never arrived by boat!  Following are some shots coming into the Bay.

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   The New York Yacht Club in Newport             A tour sailboat in front of some of the

           (It should be Newport, go figure)                                 Newport   mansions

  DSC03802The house above has an interesting history.  The man who owns it had a house in Jamestown that was confiscated by the government to make a fort during one of the wars.  He decided that if he built his new house on an island no one would ever take it from him!   Now his descendents are the caretakers.  That is the Newport bridge in the background.

Sitting on Rickshaw’s aft deck, I can see the house that we used to live in and the condo that one of my aunts lives in.  Ah, the memories!

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                       Our house                                                            Aunt Blanche’s condo

DSC03822  DSC03829 DSC03909                                   Various shots of the Newport Bridge…in the fog and at night 

The Bay Voyage hotel, down the street from our old house, also has an interesting history.  In the 1800’s and in fact into the early 1900’s Narragansett Bay used to freeze over so you could walk to Newport from Jamestown.  Sometime in the 1800’s this hotel was somehow taken over the ice from Newport to where it sits now, hence the name Bay Voyage!


My youngest brother, Peter, drove up from Maryland on Friday and on Saturday we met at my Aunt Betty’s house (Betty is now 103 1/2!) for a lobster dinner with Aunt Blanche, cousin Jane and her husband Doug.  We bought the lobsters right off the boat where we docked Rickshaw.  We had a great time visiting and catching up.  What a great family I have!

DSC03831      This is the lobster boat across the dock from Rickshaw where we bought the lobsters

Because the season is short, the costs for dockage are pretty high, so we only stayed at the dock for one night, and then moved to a mooring in the harbor.  Included in the mooring costs was a launch service to and from the marina.

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         Above are the launch boats                                                 The ‘new’ ferry

On Sunday Pete moved onto Rickshaw and we left Narragansett Bay for Block Island.  This is a small island about 21 miles from where we were.  Block Island has the distinction of being the smallest town in the smallest state.  We arrived early Sunday afternoon in the Great Salt Pond, the harbor for Block Island, and spent the day relaxing.  The next day we took the dingy down and went into town.  It is a quaint but touristy town full of restaurants and shops.  We enjoyed walking around and looking at the sights then had a great lunch before returning to the boat.  We found out that the ‘townies’ call themselves Blockheads.  Funny.

Click here to see our location in the Great Salt Pond on Block island, RI

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                       Peter and Rick                                                         Block Island Light House

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  Beach at Great Salt Pond where we moored                     Coast Guard Station  

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                    Lots of boats moored                                                  The dingy

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                                                          Various shots of the town

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                                                      Beautiful gardens here

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                                              More gardens and the Block Island Ferry DSC03876                                                       Colorful Block Island Ferry boat bus 

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         Lots of old Victorian hotels                                                  Cool sign

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On the way back to Rickshaw we spied this little guy.  He was most curious about why we were cruising around his boat.  Very cute!

Pete swam and fished and drove Rickshaw back to Narragansett Bay and I think he returned a bit more relaxed than when he left.  We enjoyed his visit. 

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We have taken the launch into town to get laundry done and buy a few more provisions and visit with relatives.  Last night we met our friends from North Carolina, who are close by visiting family.  Lynn and Mark took the launch over to Rickshaw for appetizers and wine and then we all took the launch back into town for a great dinner.  They were kind enough to call us from Walmart and picked up a few necessary items for us (you know, important things like toilet bowl cleaner and Marvel Mystery Oil for the diesel fuel).  Thanks, guys.  We had such a good time visiting with them.  Phil, we polished off the wine you brought us and toasted you and Barb!  Thanks so much.

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The gang.  Tough to get a straight picture on a boat when using the tripod and delay timer.

DSC03932                                                    Picture of Rickshaw taken from the launch

This morning as we were having our coffee, we noticed all the little sailboats attached to a mooring ball next to us.  Then two small boats came over with all the kids on board who noisily got into the sailboats for their sailing lessons.  It was fun to watch as they ‘accidently’ fell into the water getting into the boats.  What a hoot!


We will stay on the mooring ball for one more night as the weather is iffy today.  We are also waiting for a part that should come in today at noon.  One of the components of our satellite TV kicked the bucket so this is a replacement.  Tomorrow we will start to make our way east to an anchorage then the next day traverse the Cape Cod Canal and start our way north to Maine.