French sailors and painted ladies in Annapolis

The Étoile and Belle-Poule are flying American flags because they're sailing in American waters.
French flags are flying at the bow and stern of the schooners.

Stephane and I are blessed with wonderful neighbors in Annapolis. They keep an eye on our house while we're gone and make sure that we're up to date with all of the latest happenings when we're in town. As soon as Beth and Jim told us about the two French schooners moored at the US Naval Academy as part of the 200th anniversary celebration of the War of 1812, we decided to take a break from our chores this morning to see if the French sailors would be willing to share some of their baguettes and croissants.


The Étoile and Belle-Poule, each with a crew of seventeen, are sailing up the East Coast after competing in a tall ship race in Savannah, Ga. While Stephane asked technical questions about their speed (up to 12.5 knots) and if a Swiss man would be allowed to serve in the French Navy, I walked around the deck and snuck a peak in the galley. When I saw that the cook had prepared hamburgers for lunch, I couldn't resist teasing the sailors! They were quick to respond that they had to make do with what they could find in foreign ports since they had already eaten all of their French provisions. Poor guys, if I would have known I would have given them one of the jars of Maille mustard that I brought from Paris.

Hamburgers on a French Naval vessel. Let's hope they didn't serve them with ketchup!

After their stop in Annapolis, the Étoile and Belle-Poule will sail to Philadelphia, New York and St. Pierre, Canada with six midshipmen from the US Naval Academy who will use the sailing experience as a summer training opportunity.


And the painted ladies? That's the nickname given to the colorful houses in the historic district in Annapolis. After visiting the French schooners, Stephane and I strolled around town and studied the other homes, many of which were constructed in the 18th century, because we're trying to decide on a new color scheme for our painted lady.



Comments

  1. oh how lucky for you. I love touring the tall ships. In Chestertown, where I lived before moving to Chicago, the tall ships came in the Spring and Fall and we'd go tour them or do one of the river cruises. Always great to be on the old ships.

    Benjamin Moore makes a great booklet on the historic colors of America, if you can find a good paint store that has it. I love the painted ladies, all fine in their showy glory. In C'town I opted for a modern color on the exterior called "Windmill Wings"--it's a soft sky blue.

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    1. Thanks for the tip about Benjamin Moore's historical palette. It's exactly what we're looking for! We asked for something similar at Sherwin William's but they didn't seem to have it.

      Since you like old ships, you might enjoy the mini-series Horatio Hornblower.. We loved it!

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    2. Oh Yes, you should see the Horatio Hornblower series...I love, love , love it and actually own every episode, have watched them over and over...wishing for more.

      Maybe now that Ioan's American series, "Ringer" was just cancelled, he will be open to doing more...fingers crossed!
      Dekage

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  2. what lovely houses! and is there anything better than being by the sea? your photos make me miss home :) and even more excited to head back in August. Enjoy your stay and your son's graduation! (bravo!!!!)

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    1. It won't be much longer until August. Let's just hope that Sir L can wait to do his shopping until then!

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    2. oh please... with his job.. he gets to shop like every six weeks!!! now this girl... that's another story :)

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  3. Beautiful photos! and I love the painted ladies.

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    1. Thanks! The painted ladies are real eye catchers!

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  4. Sorry but that ship name sounds too much like "poubelle"!

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    1. Ha! I don't think that I'll mention the similarity to the French Navy! It might start a naval battle on the Chesapeake! According to the booklet, the name "Belle-Poule" has graced 4 French ships. It came from the nickname, "Belle Paule" for Paule Viguier, the famous French Baronne de Fonterville. It dates back to Francois the 1st in 1533.

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  5. Leave it to the French to upscale, really upscale, the gourmet burger truck...but Oh Dear, don't tell TA or you will start another firestorm!

    Enjoy being home and Congrats to your Son!
    dekage

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    1. Thanks! It feels REALLY good to be "home"!

      Yeah, those French take hamburgers to new heights! While we were visiting the schooners, there was a French man from Brittany and his American wife who were visiting the boats at the same time. When the wife made a comment that we were aboard the best restaurant in Annapolis, I shattered her illusions with the information about the hamburgers. The French - they're just like the rest of us when it comes to a good burger! ;) Although they probably wouldn't eat it standing up like we would at a food truck. And no, there's no way that I would post this info on TA. It's top secret!

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    2. Oh Poor Madam, crestfallen, no doubt...the common burger on a majestic French ship! But, frankly, I would love to frequent this particular burger joint...if only for the "Sailor Scenery" ;-0
      dekage

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    3. Sorry to say that the "Sailor Scenery" aboard the Belle-Poule and Etoile was less than stellar. Stephane and I laughed on the way home because they were a rather sullen lot who were smoking (!!!) aboard the ship. Unfortunately, they exemplified every negative stereotype about the French. Perhaps it's because they've run out of French rations and have been reduced to eating hamburgers! ;) If you're looking for "Sailor Scenery", the Americans are ship-shape in their dress whites. Not that I was paying any attention... ;)

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  6. Love those painted ladies. They remind me of the ones in San Francisco.

    Looks like you're having a wonderful "home away from home" trip. Enjoy!

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    1. Your comment about the painted ladies resembling those in San Francisco makes me wonder why homes near the water are so brightly painted while they're not inland. Hmm, I'll have to see if I can come up with an explanation.

      And we're definitely enjoying ourselves. It would be hard not to in Annapolis!

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    2. My nephew is a midshipman, Class of 2015 and he is on this French tall ship for his summer experience!!! What a great time!!

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    3. What a wonderful experience for your nephew! I would love to hear more about it!

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