Today is Memorial Day, 30 May 2022, and we are observing it on the Erie Canal, firstly at Lyons and then via our sailing to Fairport.
This morning, Mark and I walked the short distance to the town park where people were congregating. The bunting and flags were in abundance in the bandstand. The fire department arrived with three trucks. A scouts group formed up in lines. A few ex-servicemen assembled to re-tell old times. And a few citizens gathered to applaud the marchers as they passed. It was a small affair, but heartfelt for those who served and in remembrance for those who gave the ultimate sacrifice.
Late morning, we set sail, passing through Lock 27, with the wonderful Bob Stopper farewelling us and taking action shots. Thank you, Bob, for sending them to us, as it is quite rare we have photos of us actually sailing.
Through more locks and under more low bridges, Bushranger sailed to Palmyra for a lunch stop. We wanted to boost the local economy, but alas, all was shut and the streets deserted for Memorial Day.
Westwards, ever westwards, Bushranger’s nose pointed towards the setting sun. We sailed on the stretch of the Erie Canal where many relics and ruins of the original canal are easily seen. It is exciting to see the towpath and buildings of the bygone era.
We have now reached Fairport, the furthest west we will venture. This is a town made by the canal. It runs right through the middle and dockage is available in downtown. The bridges are a hoot, with one bridge a lift bridge with unbelievable angles. It is raised by a bridge master after boats have radioed they need to come through town. When down, the bridge is only 5-6 feet above the water. On the signal of hooter blasts, plus a lowered boom gate with flashing red lights, cars and pedestrians are stopped. Then, when the bridge is fully raised, pedestrians can cross via stairs, whilst the boats sail underneath. It really is a buzz!
It is so lovely here, we may even stay two nights. A little bit of down-time, plus a little bit of boat sprucing up, not to mention boosting the local economy, would not go amiss!
Such is Life!