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blogbrainsmallSeacoast History Blog #86
May 28, 2010

Tell me this is not odd. I finished my book on Privateer Lynx at 5 am yesterday morning after an all-nighter. It has been an 18-month marathon. A few hours earlier I got an email from the Lynx headquarters in Newport Beach, California announcing that Lynx was resting peacefully in Gosport Harbor at the Isles of Shoals. The last time I saw her was in San Diego. Lynx has been headed this way from California since November 2009 – seven months and thousands of miles. So what are the chances I would write the final words at the very moment she arrived here? (continued below with PHOTOS)



READ ALSO: Privateer Lynx Heads Eat
READ ALSO: First Perilous Journey of Lynx

The book won’t be published until next year, but 99% of my job is done. Tomorrow I will put the manuscript in the hands of the man who dreamed up and paid for Lynx. He just flew here to celebrate the return of Lynx to the East Coast, and especially to her registered home port of Portsmouth, NH. On Monday the re-imagined 1812 schooner will head to Rockport, Maine where she was born in 2001. Then she’s off to Canada and to a tall ship festival in the Great Lakes.

HMS Bounty at Prescott Park, POrtsmouth/

Technically the Lynx and her buddy HMS Bounty arrived a day early. I got an email from the parents of a crew member tipping me off that Lynx would make a soft landing, then go back out for the official welcoming boat parade on Friday. I called Capt. Jamie Trost on his cell phone to check the facts. He answered.


"I hear you’re headed in early?" I said. It was about noon on Thursday.

"I’m almost there," Jamie said. "We’re approaching the mouth of the Piscataqua River now!"

The image is stuck in my mind – a tall dark-haired captain in a puffy sailor shirt steering a tall ship with one hand and talking on a cell phone with the other.

By the time I arrived at the commercial fishing dock, the boats were already in. The scenic power of this new location is breathtaking. We have gotten used to seeing our tall ships tucked up at the state pier between the giant pile of salt and the giant pile of rusting junk. This year, due to maintenance at the port, the two tall ships are lined up in full view of Prescott Park, the arched Peirce Island Bridge and Four Tree Island. Gorgeous.

Capt Jamie Trost with Lynx in Portsmouth/

The early arrival gave the crew and the harbormaster and the volunteers of the Piscataqua Maritime Commission valuable prep time. This visit is almost three months earlier than the annual August visit and lands on Memorial Day Weekend. If the weather turns out as the forecast predicts, this should be one bang-up and even profitable event.

For me, though, it was more than weird. I hope to begin a new book soon on the Isles of Shoals, which is where the Lynx spent the night. The ship is docked tonight across from the Strawbery Banke Museum, the focus of a book that swallowed three years of my life.

I guess you have to be me to feel the significance. But these three historic sites – an island, a boat, and a 10-acre museum, will represent almost a decade of my writing life. And suddenly they are connected by a single short voyage. People say I don’t get out much and they’re right.

But to that criticism I can only quote my college companion Frank Kafka, who seems to have been right all along when he said:

"It is not necessary that you leave the house. Remain at your table and listen. Do not even listen, only wait. Do not even wait, be wholly still and alone. The world will present itself to you for its unmasking, it can do no other, in ecstasy it will writhe at your feet."

© 2010 All rights reserved.

HMS Bounty in Portsmouth, NH May 2010/

Furling Privateer Lynx sail at Prescott Park /

Privateer Lynx in Portsmouth May 2010/

Lynx and Bounty at Portsmouth, NH /

Bounty and Lynx at Fish Pier on Peirce Island, Portsmouth, NH /

Photos (c)







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Lynx Returns Quietly at First
Tuesday, January 16, 2018 
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