Monthly Archives: August 2019

USCG Coastal Patrol Boat Cobia

The story behind this shot is similar to yesterday’s image. While out with my niece, I spotted this Coast Guard boat. It was rather far off and I didn’t think it would make for a good image. It surprised me by turning towards the point of land where we were standing. Like yesterday’s story, my niece was using the camera with the tele-zoom lens. We traded cameras and I made this image. I’m presenting it in BW because the light was rather flat. A color image and some information on the boat are below.

The Cobia is a Coastal Patrol Boat (WPB), 87-foot Marine Protector class. The Marine Protector is an innovative, multi-mission class of vessel capable of performing search and rescue, law
enforcement, fishery patrols, drug interdiction, illegal immigrant interdiction, and homeland security duties up to 200 miles offshore. The 73 cutters in this class carry an 11-person crew and are capable of achieving a maximum continuous speed of 25 knots. Source:

Four Birds

I’d written earlier this summer about making photos with my niece on Cape Cod. We spent another day together in July. This time, we were in Boston. It was raining when we started out and everything was rather wet. The tables and chairs in Copley Square were empty except for these four birds. I quickly swapped cameras with my niece. (I’d lent her the oe with the tele-zoom lens) and snapped this shot. It was our favorite shot of the day.

Connecticut Valley Tobacco Museum

I never really associated New England with growing tobacco. However, driving through the Connecticut River Valley in Massachusetts, I’d seen some really interesting barns with vents on the side. Often there would be two or three of them in a field. They had such an interesting look to them. I discovered they were tobacco sheds. It turns out that the Connecticut River Valley grows the ideal types of tobacco for the binder and outer wrapper for cigars. After the leaves are harvested, they have to be slowly dried. Hence, the barns with vents in them. The leaves are hung in these barns to dry. Earlier this summer, I took some exterior photos of tobacco sheds but I really wanted to see the inside of one and make some images there.

With a bit of online research, I discovered the Connecticut Valley Tobacco Museum in Windsor Locks, CT. It is in two buildings. One is an archive building that holds records and has a small museum on the history and process of growing tobacco in the Connecticut River Valley. The other building is a tobacco shed. Inside are tractors, displays of farm equipment and drying tobacco leaves. Tobacco was a huge part of the local community and everyone was involved. One display described sending children out in the field to pick weeds and thin plants with their small hands. Cultivating shade-grown tobacco is quite a process because coverings of cheesecloth need to be hung above the plants so that they are shaded. The harvesting process was also done by hand with the leaves placed on sticks to be hung in the sheds.

The museum is located in Northwest Park, which is a former tobacco farm. The park itself is beautiful with nice trails and other buildings used for more displays. There is a petting barn filled with children’s favorite farm animals. Check the museum’s website if you plan to visit. The shed is open seasonally on Saturdays. You can also call to arrange tours. It’s an interesting place to visit. We were glad we detoured and stopped. Children can enjoy the tails and animal barn. For you photographers out there who want a new location for doing portraits or a photoshoot, the park is a beautiful setting.

Freedom of Speech

This man arrived at the recent Lowell Folk Festival with a large religiously-themed but less than tolerant sign and rhetoric to match it. The festival organizers wanted him to leave, encouraged him to leave, and when he didn’t go, they asked the police to make him leave. But they couldn’t. The festival takes place in a public place. Our country’s right to freedom of speech allows him to be in that place with his sign and talk to people about his beliefs. In this image, a group of festival volunteers was debating with him about the nature of God’s love.