Monday, June 2, 2014

Many 40th Anniversaries

I'm coming up upon a number of 40th anniversaries in my life. If I chronicled them all here, I'd quickly bore you. For now I'll just list the major ones.
  • June 2 graduated from college
  • June 10 headed west, driving from Rhode Island for my job in Kansas City
  • June 17 began my career as a civil engineer
Tucked in around those dates are other, smaller events, that are memorable to me but which wouldn't go in a resume. For example, the week before graduation (so that would be 40 years ago this week, perhaps even today) was the senior trip to Block Island. It was mainly a drinking party at whatever facility the university rented for us. We went by ferry from Galilee, to New Harbor. I was with a good friend from Newport, Marty Gollis. Along the way we teamed up with another friend, Gail Whitney. The three of us planned to go, after the ferry returned us to the mainland, to a rock and roll revival concert at the Providence Civic Center that night, so it was kind of natural for us to hang out together.

It was quite a pleasant day. My memory says that most of the people I talked with at the party had never been to Block Island before. I had, thought it was fourteen years before on a family vacation. My step-grandfather's sister lived on Block Island and we stayed with her. Her house was called "Cozy Cottage." I remembered that Old Harbor was, well, old and quaint and had things to see and do. I suggested we walk there, just a mile away. Marty and Gail agreed, so we headed out, maybe just the three of us, maybe with a few other people. We went to Deadeye Dick's, a bar, had a drink, walked around the village, possibly stopped in a couple of shops, and walked back. It was a pleasant diversion from the revelers back at New Harbor. As to the rest of that day—the concert and the drive back to Barrington and Newport—I'll put that in a memoir someday.

Another item from that week, on the couple of days before the Block Island trip, was a sailing adventure in Narragansett Bay. One of our friends from our university days, Paul Sorrentino, had access to his father's sailboat, and invited us to sail the bay with him. It was a decent sized boat with sleeping berths, but by no means a yacht. More than one person should probably try to handle, but easy enough for two.

We sailed out of Barrington, Paul, Gary, Joe, Chuck, and me. I recall the wind was fresh that first day, and we had some great runs, cutting through the chop. We anchored that night in cove at Prudence Island, and slept comfortably. The next morning we made a quick run to Newport, picked up Marty, and had another great day of sailing with good winds. We spent that night in Newport Harbor. It turned out the boat could sleep five with no problem, but the sixth person was a bit much. Marty slept on the floor of the cabin, slept poorly, and was dead tired next morning. That's when he and I left the boat and headed for Marty's house, then across the bay on the bridges and on to Galilee for the Block Island trip, while the others sailed back to Barrington. Gary snapped the photo that shows the other five of us on the second day.

All of which is of interest only to me and a few others. But it's what I wanted to write about today. Expect a few more posts like this as these anniversaries unfold.

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