What a lovely boat!

imageI love wooden boats. I have books on how to build them, and yes, once daydreamed of building my own wooden sailboat and sailing away in it.

The passing of time and getting older have a way of tempering such daydreams. Wood sailboats are fun to gaze at, but expensive to own and a hassle to maintain. And it takes a plenty of patience to travel by a conveyance whose top speed is 6 mph on a good day.

Even in my younger days, tall ships were beyond my ambitions. There’s the money, for one thing: This replica of a Revolutionary War-era French frigate cost $27 million to build, and sailing it requires a professional crew of 72 (the original had a crew of 255, including the cannoneers and marines, but sailor wages were cheaper then).

But, oh so lovely to look at! Launched in 2014, she just completed her first transatlantic sail, arriving in New York in time for America’s Independence Day celebrations. CBS News reports,

“Fireworks announced the arrival of the French frigate Hermione into New York Harbor this week, just in time for the Fourth of July. … The original Hermione was part of the blockade … that led to the British surrender, ending the American Revolution. … Lafayette said of Hermione that she sails like a bird. And as such, she will sail past the Statue of Liberty before leaving New York. Lady Liberty was France’s second gift to America. Hermione and Lafayette were the first.”

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