Sunday, February 15, 2009

V-Day is over...

Thank God.
And thank God for good weather!

Here in Southern California, Valentine's Day is a crapshoot - we never really know what to expect.

I've seen dozens of cruises go out in heavy winds.

We've had to reschedule a fair share of cruises due to rain.

A few years gondoliers and dock staff have been literally dumped on by our favorite storm which comes from south of the border: El NiƱo.

Each year we hope (and pray) for good conditions.

This year the weather was darn near perfect.

Here are a few shots I took from the gondola.

Giuseppe cruises by on his Crystal Swan.

Cole waves while passing by the docks
at the Villa Nova restaurant.

A few stand-up paddlers "rowed" past my gondola, Laird Hamilton style.

A gondola from my competitor
glides toward the setting sun.


Anonymous said...

> A gondola from my competitor
glides toward the setting sun. <

What happened to his ferro? Lacking a counterweight the gondola's balance is supposed to be badly affected.

grigory-never-get-there said...

Congratulations, Greg! I myself rowed 11 cruises in Naples. You'd think I'd be sore, but my singing voice is what hurt the most.

I turned the 1 oar american boat we have into a 2 seater, and weighed down the front of the boat with [concealed] car batteries. She looked a lot nicer than usual.

Gondola Greg said...

Smart observation Tamas.

They have a different approach to the ferro there: it's usually made of wood and painted silver.
It hangs on the end of the bow and if the gondolier runs into something, the ferro falls in the water, and the gondolier pulls it out and re-hangs it before his next cruise.

It's not what I would do, but I don't criticize someone else's methods - there are so many different interpretations here in the US.

With regard to the counterweight issue, you'll notice that the couple is seated further forward, thereby weighing down the front of the boat more.

Gondola Greg said...

Grigory, eleven cruises is an accomplishment for sure.

Clever idea with the car batteries.
I've done a similar thing in the past: if I have a couple who are very different in weight, I'll place a battery under the trasto de meso on the side of the lighter passenger. Most of the time I can offset the imbalance by changing my placement on the deck, but every now and then you get a passenger named "Skinny Pete"...who aint so skinny!

I was on the water all day and night, and it was the same thing: a few aches, but my voice, Geez! I sounded like a softball coach at the end of the night!