The Midnight Oil

Good morning everyone. The midnight oil has been burned. And the results are stunning. The schooner looks absolutely fantastic. The kids were fast asleep on the settees in the main cabin by the time we were putting the finishing touches on the main cabin. I can’t tell you enough how impressed I am by the crew and how hard they worked. Today is Coast Guard inspection and I think we are in good shape for that.

Jake Carey, our assistant executive chef de cuisine, arrived to find a schooner that by all outward appearances did not look too organized. By days end he had a uncorked the galley, washed all the dishes, washed all the utensils, helped raise topsails, organized the tools, and many other items. Sara, Becki, and Jen had bent on the staysail, fore and main topsails, and jib. The frustrating moment of the day for me was the discovery of a couple “iffy” seams in our 1-year-old jib topsail. Evidently the synthetic canvas is cut in to its appropriate widths with a hot knife. If the canvas is run through too quickly the selvage edge can be brittle. Our sail maker and next door neighbor, Brad Hunter of Gambell and Hunter Sails of Camden and Appleton, Maine returned my call immediately and will put the sail on the floor of his loft immediately. Now that is service.

Jim Dugan showed up again to help with topsails and lend greatly appreciated moral support and good cheer. They say it takes a village to raise and rig a topsail.

Sorry no pictures this morning. I am out of time and need to get down to the boat for drills and finishing touches.

Have a great day. Be well. Do good.


  1. Captain Barry,
    Good luck to you and the whole crew today on the Coast Guard inspection. Thanks for your frequent blogs. I love your philosophical musings and, of course, pictures of the boat and crew (Sara, in particular).

  2. From a very old Navy hand and a long time Mary Day passenger WELL DONE to Captains and Crew!


  3. I have enjoyed reading about your preparations for the trip and look forward to our first cruise trip on the Mary Day next Thursday.
    This will also be our first trip on a sail boat other than a short trip out of Mystic, CT for a few hours.
    Are there any suggestions from you or others who have done this before?

    We’ll see you next week!

    Irma & Jim

  4. Irma and Jim,

    I can’t say I’m an old hand at sailing on the Mary Day, I’ve only been twice but I plan to take my third and fourth trips this season. My advice, first and most importantly, leave your cares back home. A few days on the Mary Day bring peace and tranquility. Enjoy the sounds of the wind and water but no engine noise. Participate in raising and lowering the sails (or not). Being on the water with the fresh air is invigorating to mind and body. So enjoy the food, enjoy the scenery, enjoy the people, read a good book (or just a fun book). I hope you find your first trip as wonderful as mine was.


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