Examining life
It's back to reality from meeting Kentucky cousins. This
week coaching New York City firefighter candidates on
the physical test is the priority. Although this very physical
job is worlds away from Carnegie Hall, the same principle
applies: Practice, Practice, Practice! In between was a trip
to Clayton, N.Y., a surprisingly sleepy town for being
poised on the confluence of great forces. It sits on the
cusp where Lake Ontario, the easternmost Great Lake,
empties into the Saint Lawrence River. Tibbets Point Light
tells the story. Even stout trees there reflect the constant
pummeling of being bent by northwest wind. Invasive
Phragmites square off against native cattails in a turf battle
over swampland. The confluence of Canada, the United
States, Lake Ontario and the Saint Lawrence River is a
major shipping lane sprinkled with a Thousand Islands
where violent storms have piled shipwrecks upon
shipwrecks, which is a reason for going there. New York
and Federal backing of the
Seaway Trail helps scuba
divers contemplate the carnage wrought on some of ships
that didn't make it through the slender, current-wracked
bottleneck in the Saint Lawrence Seaway. The
Islander,
for example, was a ferry on a routine run before it sank in
1909 just off Alexandria Bay's hospital. Farther west, the
St. Louis succumbed to the region's mercurial weather on
Feb. 18, 1914. This was a 600-ton wooden schooner built
in 1864, the last year of the U.S. Civil War. All you need
to visit this 144-year-old relic is a diving certification card,
a snorkel or gills. The
New York State Diver's Association
met there, which inspired me to share back issues of
Northeast Dive News with the 50 some members who
attended the event. Being a diver, I packed for alternative
activities to pursue in a climatologically dynamic region,
thank heavens. Getting blown out allowed a visit to a
sheep and wool festival, which featured things people did
in days of yore when the weather was inclement.
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Alpaca
NYC / DCAS Examiner
Muskellunge / Tomelleri
NE Dive News / NYSDA
Sheep / Wool Festival
Phragmites / Cattail Border
Tibbets Point Light
Cape Vincent
Islander Entry