"The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in
its net of wonder forever."—Jacques Cousteau

July 27, 2017

Historic New York Barns

As we've driven around upstate New York we've seen a lot of wonderful old barns and beautiful farms. Agriculture is a major component of the New York economy and the Finger Lakes region is the center of that business. There are over 35,000 farms in New York and the state is a top-ten national producer of cow milk, apples, grapes, onions, sweet corn, tomatoes, and maple syrup. So anyway...as we've driven around I started wondering why are barns usually painted red? So here's what I found on the Internet.

Many years ago, choices for paints, sealers and other building materials did not exist. Farmers had to be resourceful in finding or making a paint that would protect and seal the wood on their barns. Hundreds of years ago, many farmers would seal their barns with linseed oil, which is an orange-colored oil derived from the seeds of the flax plant. To this oil, they would add a variety of things, most often milk and lime, but also ferrous oxide, or rust. Rust was plentiful on farms and because it killed fungi and mosses that might grow on barns, and it was very effective as a sealant. The rust turned the mixture red in color. When paint became more available, many people still chose red paint for their barns in honor of tradition.
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July 26, 2017

Lucky Stones

“The only problem with looking for sea glass…is that you never look up. You never see the view. You never see the houses or the ocean, because you’re afraid you’ll miss something in the sand.” —Anita Shreve

I've always enjoyed beachcombing...partially because I like the treasures I find, but especially because I love spending time on the beach being close to the water. Every area has a different treasure to offer...shells, sea glass, sponges, lobster buoys and here along Cayuga Lake...lucky stones. The shores of Cayuga Lake are one of the few places where “Lucky Stones” can be found. These are rocks with fossil worm holes. Legend has it that they bring good luck to anyone who finds one. I think I'll use a few of the stones on my pine needle baskets.

Stones that have natural holes, called Odin Stones or Hag Stones, have always been considered mystical and sacred, with special healing properties and windows into the soul. These stones are reported to have extremely powerful magical properties, the most important of which is protection.

These are a few of the smaller stones I might use on my pine needle baskets
I think we have plenty of luck for the boat now.
We found a few fossils too
and a couple of cute hearts.
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July 25, 2017

Our Ithaca Neighborhood

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

“Travel far enough, you meet yourself.” —David Mitchell
We've been in our summer home at Allan H. Treman State Marine Park for about two months and we really love this area of New York. Our new neighborhood is beautiful and very relaxing. We are surrounded by the State Park and Cass Park, both have a lot of green space and limited traffic, so our nights are dark and quiet...just the way we like it. 

The Cayuga Waterfront Trail starts near the marina and runs along the Cayuga Inlet and then around the southern end of the lake. It's a wonderful way to get around the traffic in town. The following pictures give you an idea of what our neighborhood looks like. 

An aerial view of our neighborhood  
The Hanger Theater
The road to the marina
Our marina
The entrance to the marina from Cayuga Lake
Looking up the Cayuga Inlet towards Ithaca from tip of the park
Looking towards the marina from the marina entrance
The other side of the entrance to the marina...part of the park with a trail and picnic tables along the lake shore
Walking towards the marina from the parking lot
The two docks to the west of ours are for smaller boats
Our dock is in the center of the marina
The Pearl in her summer home
Two more docks to the east of us for medium size boat...nothing over 30'
The dog park across the parking lot from the marina
The Cayuga Lakefront Trail ends at the marina
There is a pool, skating rink, play ground, tennis courts and boat launch within a short distant from the boat.
Boat launch for kayaks, canoes and dragon boats
Cass Park has a lot of activity fields for soccer, football, softball and baseball
Views from the bow of The Pearl
View from the flybridge...we enjoy sitting and looking at this view in the morning and evening.
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July 24, 2017

July 20-22 Oneonta, NY

Allan H. Treman Marine State Park

“How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live.” ―Henry David Thoreau 
One of the benefits of cruising is making new friends that become life long friends. We always look forward to reconnecting with these friends when our wakes cross again. This past weekend we had a chance to catch up with five old friends. We spent three days playing, relaxing, eating, drinking, talking, fishing and even doing a little ranch work at Maryann and Georges Waterhill Farm. No matter how long it's been since we've last seen each other...it feels like it was just last week. Our mini reunion was a lot of fun...even though we weren't on the water.

The farm...
The view...
 The horses...
A busy day at Waterhill Farm
Stacking hay...this isn't work...it's fun. Right?
Every event needs a few cheerleaders
Just relaxing with friends
Boating friends...Maryann, Pam, Rickey, Donny and George
Stan had a chance to do a little fishing while we were at the farm...he even caught a rainbow trout and it made a great dinner when we got back to the boat.
Thanks for reading our blog and spending part of your day with us. The Pearl is also on Facebook - stop by and say hi or follow us on Instragram or Google+.