At the start of Memorial Day weekend, I took a bike ride over to Red Hook, Brooklyn to see the ships docked during New York City’s Fleet Week. The ships are just a few of many from all over the world that were in the Parade of Ships a couple of days ago and are part of a program called Operation Sail. But, what captured my attention more were the men on the ships, not the ships themselves. From ship to ship, it was more like visiting mini country after country: Finland, Mexico, Japan, Spain, and the U.S. Many of the men didn’t speak English but every one of them was willing to step aside and pose for my camera.
From the OpSail website:
“World peace through world trade is the purpose behind OpSail,”
Operation Sail, often referred to as “OpSail,” was the brainchild of late maritime historian Frank Braynard and IBMer Nils Hansell, who shared a vision of fostering global goodwill in an era of global uncertainty by bringing together the world’s remaining windships; they envisaged a nautical spectacular that would culminate in a parade of sails in New York Harbor. [From the Operation Sail website, http://www.opsail.org]
The sailors are from the following ships docked in Red Hook, Brooklyn.
JUAN SEBASTIAN de EL CANO Schooner (Spain)
CUAUHTEMOC Barque (Mexico)
BELLE POULE Schooner(France)
FNS POHJANMAA Military Mine Layer ( Finland)
JS SHIRANE Military Destroyer (Japan) – this ship also had a helicopter on board that visitors could get into and check out. This helicopter was used in rescue missions during the 2011 Japan earthquake/tsunami.
USCG CUTTER SENECA US Coast Guard (United States)