SS United States, the biggest, fastest, most glamorous of the U.S.-built ocean liners, may be put back into service as early as 2018 as the crown jewel of Crystal Cruise’s burgeoning luxury fleet if she can be brought back up to snuff after 20 hard years of languishing at Pier 82 in Philadelphia.
Say his name in certain salty circles, and you’ll notice a reverence in response. Capt. Jim Sharp has spent his long adult life on the water, loving (and piloting) more boats than most of us have even been aboard. He had a peripatetic childhood and a father who passed on his love of boats. At 12 he contracted polio and developed the grit to keep it from slowing him down.
Sara Faulkner describes herself as a “real-life Valley Girl from L.A.” On the other hand, during Hurricane Katrina she helped rescue 48 people in one night — so don’t let your mind rush to images of Cher Horowitz from Clueless just yet.
Two winters ago, on a family cruise through the West Indies, Kirsten Scott poked her head out of the cabin of the sloop Eleda and spotted another classic wooden sloop drifting, apparently crewless, through the anchorage on Dominica. She didn’t need her lifetime of sailing experience to know that should this lovely yacht make open water, it might not be seen again until landfall in Nicaragua. Dispatched in their vintage Lawley tender, Scott’s husband, Ross Gannon, and son, Olin, were soon aboard The Blue Peter and secured her to a mooring in the upper harbor.
Graham McKay is executive director of Lowell’s Boat Shop, a national landmark and working museum whose mission is “to preserve and perpetuate the art and craft of wooden boat building.” The oldest continuously operating boat shop in America, Lowell’s was founded by Simeon Lowell in 1793 on the banks of the Merrimack River in Amesbury, Massachusetts.
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