Monday, July 14, 2008

Dragonfly Wings in the Harbor

Yesterday late drove out on Ediz Hook after a long day of doing little but reading fire news and looking out the windows at the blue water of the Strait. Hadn't seen windsurfers before: against the whitecapped water in the harbor, the transparent sails disappeared and all I saw were strange little vertical marks speeding back and forth. Both pilot boats were docked and no big ships in sight, so I parked on the inner side of the Hook where the wind people were staging their gear; watched them flit out and back, out and back, for a long time; sometimes they nailed their turn, sometimes splat.

One of the pilot boats went to meet Norwegian Pearl and Holland America Westerdam, outward bound and dropping off the pilots who had brought them from the cruise docks in Seattle. Pearl is easy to identify without help from binoculars or cruise schedules: those goofy colored pearls painted on her sides really stand out from a distance.

Norwegian Pearl
Holland America Westerdam

Pilot boat came back in without waiting for the third cruise ship to appear; the returning pilots went into the station. I read my book, sitting inside the car as it was quite spectacularly windy. Suddenly noticed the other pilot boat had taken off, looked around and there was Maersk Wave, inbound, slowing down to pick up its pilot. Turns out these big blocky boats are vehicle carriers. Pilot boat put a pilot on Maersk Wave, then headed out to pick up the pilot from Star Princess, the third cruise ship, just emerging from the mist on the water.

Maersk Wave

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