By Judith Green
October 02, 2006
It is so good to once again see the blue and yellow of the Alaska ferries traveling up and down the Tongass Narrows between Revilla and Pennock Islands. Such majestic ships they are. My (lower) apartment is right on the tide line so I see these 'ladies' both In the daytime and the dark of night. I always have such a warm feeling when I see and hear them plying the waters.
In the beginning days of the ferry system, these beautiful ships seemed so big when we saw them sailing along the water ways. Now they may be smaller than those 'other' ships, but the Alaska Marine Highway System still has the very best ships, personnel and offerings to both residents and visitors.
uI had to take a leave of absence from Ketchikan in the 90's to care for my mother in New York. As my children still lived here, I came back every 2 years or so to visit. At the end of one such visit, my children and grandchildren rose early to see me off - I was traveling to YPR on one of our majestic ferries. It was a teary good-bye as I walked up the ramp, up the stairs, then stood at the railing waiving and hearing all of them shouting "Good bye Mom; good bye Grandma; we love you". Then I heard a voice from the deck above saying, "You must be one special grandmother" - and he gave a special 'toot' and message over the loud speaker to all my family. This brought cheers from all on board, and gave me many opportunities to get acquainted with other travelers as we made our way South.
Being away from Alaska I missed some things very much and spoke often to others about these things: the ocean, the tides, and the activity both under and on top of the water; the mountains; and the AMHS.
Our Alaska residents who work on these ships take pride in representing this great State via our marine highway system. I'm glad to see the route to and from the Ketchikan terminal is "back where she belongs", and not between Pennock and Gravina. I watch the entry and exit often, so if you are traveling sometime to or from Ktn you may see me at the front window, or standing outside watching and enjoying - you are welcome to wave and shout 'HELLO".
Received October 02, 2006 - Published October 02, 2006
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