I trust this email finds you all doing well and that hopefully you had a fabulous weekend. With summer in the rear view mirror, fall must be just around the turn ahead.
Last weekend was jammed packed with tons of activities occurring around the island with a surf fishing tournament, the Day at the Docks festival and a surfing competition complimented by huge waves courtesy of Hurricane Igor. Of course the most important event this weekend was celebrating my birthday with my girlfriend. She surprised me with a “bucket list” boat trip to the deserted island of Portsmouth where we spent the day stepping back in time. The island was the hub of activity in the late 1800’s and is now abandoned. As luck would have it, other than the caretaker, we had the island all to ourselves for the day.
The biggest celebration for the weekend was actually the Day at the Docks. It is the annual celebration that pays tribute to the men and industry of commercial fisherman known as “waterman”. The day brings local fishing families and tourists together on the waterfront where commercial fishing boats, charter boats, and fishing gear are displayed in celebration of the history of this storied profession. The days’ activities conclude with a procession of fishing vessels entering into the harbor and the actual “Blessing of the Fleet” by local clergy to ensure a “safe and bountiful season”. The tradition of blessing began centuries ago in Mediterranean fishing communities and continues toady in coastal communities around the world. It was my first and was a true spectacle filled with history and tradition.
A traditional blessing asks for the safety and bountiful season for the fisheman – “Most gracious Lord, who numbered among your apostles the fishermen Peter, Andrew, James and John, we pray you to consecrate this boat to righteous work in your name. Guide the captain at her helm. So prosper her voyages that an honest living may be made. Watch over her passengers and crew and bring them to a safe return. And the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, be upon this vessel and all who come aboard, this day and forever. Amen”
I had the pleasure to be invited by Captain Ernie Foster and his lovely wife Lynne to ride on the lead vessel, the Albatross II, and photograph the long procession of vessels as they entered the harbor from the sound. Once docked, I headed to a higher elevation to capture the entire spectacle just as the sun broke though the clouds while the blessing was being given.
I am on the road for the next two weeks heading to Tampa and then home to Huntsville. I hope you have a great week and please do not hesitate to contact me for me with any questions you may have about any future photographic assignments.
Best wishes ……….