Hi Girls & Guys:
Being as I am going to be in Wanchese for a few weeks I thought I would do a picture and people kind of thing! The 1st segment will be pics of the Port of Wanchese. The 2nd will be pics of the Houses of Wanchese with a few comparisons to the Outer Banks thrown in. This place as you will see from the pics is very unique. The 3rd and final segment will be about the People of Wanchese whom I think are the last of a breed of true coastal Americans. A breed that is being swallowed up slowly but surely. Swallowed up by mega money and mega sport fishing boats. Bayliss Marine where the Tern will be hauled has a 3 million dollar sport fisher in the barn being built.
I will start this segment by telling you a little story about the people; For the last month or so I have been having trouble with my left eye and at the urging of a friend of mine I made an appointment with the VA Hospital in Hampton VA. The Hampton VA is a little over a hundred miles from here and I do not have a car. I went to the County Veterans agent and she said the County van would take me there at no charge! Then she told me the van would pick me up 0430 hours (4:30 am), a bit early but I had gone fishing many times that early so I said OK. The van arrived at 0430 sharp. When the door opened I was greeted like this “Good Morning Mike, my name is Ruth and I Am a Cheeser”. I was taken back to the times in my life when people were just people no airs just people! Well it turns out there were 8 people on the van three of us veterans. The Vets were dropped first then off she went .to drop the others off. She came back three hours later, picked up the rest of the patients and drove us home. .She was an excellent driver and conversationalist. It turns out my friend Frog had taught her husband how to fish many years ago. She told stories of mountainous seas when she fished with her husband on Georges Bank with their Wanchese Trawl Boat!. She woke up at midnight drinking coffee worried about getting all the passengers safely to their Dr.’s and back home in time for supper.
People and places like this are rare today and I am going to hate to leave this week but it is a little to cold for me in the winter! The weather was perfect for the haul out and working on the Tern! Everybody knows everybody in Wanchese and of course my friend Frog is the master net maker in town so he always has fresh fish dropped off. at the “Barn Café” where he cooks and builds nets. They come from miles around with their miles of nets for Frog to build and they know the more fish they bring the quicker their nets get built kind of a ‘Quid Pro Quo”.
You can see from the pics that the erosion of this fishing community has begun in earnest and there is no way to know how long it will take before this island becomes like the other islands I have lived on!
Ciao! For now,