Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Flotsam and Jetsam

So, you'd like to know what a storm can do to your yacht, should you choose to moor it in Captain's Harbor here in Greenwich. Well, wonder no more; herewith the aftermath of September 2, 2006:

Here we have a nice view of Round Island, once home to Frederick and Patricia Supper of Greenwich and Palm Beach. You can see that the sailboat missed the dock by a wide margin. Since I'm not (yet) a techie whiz like the Author Babe, I'm not sure whether you can click on the picture for a larger version that will show you the smashed rudder and keel, or whether you'll just have to settle for the panoramic view. Round Island is presently owned by the uncle of Dodi al-Fayed, who refurbished it in hopes of presenting it to Dodi and Di as a wedding gift had they not died so tragically just over nine years ago. In fact, I believe today is the anniversary of the moving funeral at Westminster Abbey, at which Elton John played "England's Rose" and Earl Spencer spoke his mind in the presence of the Royals. RIP, Princess Di - we would have loved to have you as a neighbor had events turned out differently.

Well, I had a couple of other pictures to show you, but they seem not to want to cooperate. Maybe this is high-traffic time on blogspot, as the site seems to be balky right now. So let me post this much, and get back to you later.

P.S. After posting, I tried clicking on the picture, and it does indeed give you the larger version. But the system is still not letting me upload the other two pics I have for you, so I'll just try again later.

(Time passes....) Well, it's clear that *something* is now working better - instead of waiting five minutes and getting an error message, I have managed to load the next picture in something under 15 seconds. So here it is:

This is a view of a hole in the ground, with a red bulldozer triumphantly posed on the ruins of what two weeks ago was the lovely neo-Georgian home of former IBM chairman Tom Watson. Even the Belle Haven shoreline, it seems, is not immune from the tear-down craze that has been sweeping the town like a plague. Just beyond the trees at right center is another hole in the ground, marking the former site of Victor Borge's home. The unmelancholy Dane, as he liked to call himself, would probably not be overjoyed at the sight.

Off to the right (click on the picture for the large format) is "The Pryory", former (but thankfully still-standing) home of Sam Pryor of Pan Am fame. Sam also had a large doll collection, which for many years was housed at "The Barn" on Pear Lane, until the late Dr. Jim Smith bought the barn and installed his world-class collection of antique arcade games. We said farewell to Jim just a few days ago at a memorial service at Christ Church - held there because his home church, First Presbyterian, is yet another of the many holes in the ground around this really *is* an epidemic, I tell you.

The boat lying sideways on the beach is emblematic of Pan Am, the once high-flying US flag carrier that inaugurated service across the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. Its mighty Boeing flying boats carried Churchill to the White House, and FDR to Yalta. But deregulation killed the airline, along with so many others. Pan Am helped assure its own demise by the disastrous acquisition of National, and the Lockerbie disaster did the rest. In recent years some of the former employees used to meet monthly at Manero's to keep some of the grand old spirit alive; but now most of them are decrepit or dead, and Manero's is just an empty shell of a building, soon to become...well, you know the rest.

Let's do one more boat picture, since at this point the ferry started to pull away from the shoreline, and the other half-dozen wrecks were not as easy to photograph.

Oops...I seem to have lost the picture function again. Well, we know the solution: let it go for now, and come back later. Till then....

Well, I'm ready for try number three. Here goes nothing....

Yup...nothing is just what I got. Even though I received a message saying upload successful, I tend to judge by results...which, as you can see, are non-existent. Sorry, folks, you'll just have to make do with the two pictures above.


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