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Waiting out weather in Annapolis

1000 hours Wednesday October 27, 2010
Anchored at Annapolis, Maryland
Rain and threat of thunderstorms
Wind southerly 10 to 15 knots with threat of higher in squalls

We remain anchored in Annapolis waiting on the weather. We are ahead of schedule for arrival in Chestertown tomorrow late afternoon. No reason to get underway in the current wet weather. So crew are deep into cleaning and maintenance. A shore errand is being run with the aid of past Guest Crew and Annapolis resident Goldwin Smith, who has on several occasions assisted Pride II with errands and even “sitting” Pride II when we had reason to try and get the whole crew to an appointment. Goldwin first sailed Pride II on her Atlantic Crossing of 2005. He speaks fondly of that sail and wants to do it again…in spite of the strong gale we experienced on that crossing. Friends like Goldwin are very special to PRIDE.

The Cambridge Schooner Rendezvous was a pleasant event for all due to great weather. For the previous two years running the weather was awful. But this last weekend the weather was near 70 degrees F and moderate and steady breezes of day sailing angled best to permit sailing along the axis of the Choptank River.

Cambridge, MD has a long maritime history due to being a somewhat large harbor with depth located deep into the Delmarva Peninsula. In the old days before trains and bridges the only way to get farm goods from the Eastern Shore to “The City” Baltimore was by water. When trains and eventually a good road system was developed, Cambridge remained valuable for getting oysters, clams and crabs to market and restaurants. But even so, with competition of efficiency in transportation modes, seafood could be moved directly from the fishing grounds to “The City” and it was not long before Cambridge as a “port” was seeing significant loss of commercial value while holding on to recreational boating interests. For thirty years or more this transition has been seeing more loss of value than increase of value. However recently, within the last 10 years, especially within the last 5 years, retirement home and second home interest has grown and that has led to a greater interest in Cambridge as a port. The Schooner Rendezvous is a new event that helps highlight the value of Cambridge as a port for both historical reasons as well recreational reasons. Pride II was welcomed as the icon she is by locals expressing great appreciation that she and the other schooners took the time and effort to make the rendezvous.

Sailing from Cambridge to Annapolis was very pleasant with a fresh southerly wind and near balmy temperatures. We had Pride II’s “little sister” Lynx in company the whole way. Two privateers of the 1812 War vintage in the same water is unique enough…but in the Chesapeake Bay brings back essences of what the bay scene must have offered way back then.

Jan C. Miles, Captain aboard Pride of Baltimore II