A View of the Harbor from a Whaleboat in Winter

When the cold winds blow and there’s a hint of snow in the air, most ladies of a “certain age” are content to pick up their knitting, or a good book, and spend the afternoon in the comfort of their snug living rooms. Not so, for the ladies of the Buzzards Bay Rowing Club’s Norwegian Squarehead Rowing Team, who, every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, bundle up and drive down to Fort Street where they climb into one of the two whaleboats docked there and head out into the harbor for a frosty row.

It doesn’t take long until the gals are warmed up to comfort level and can enjoy the beauty of the winter harbor in all its splendor. With the sky awash in pastel colors of every hue, and the Fairhaven waterfront and skyline bathed in the golden glow of the setting sun, the ladies often avast, pausing to enjoy the magnificent panorama before them. On occasion, a full moon will rise just as the sun makes a blazing exit eliciting oohs and aahs from the crew. This peace and serenity of the harbor in the late afternoon is interrupted only by the humming of an occasional fishing boat passing by.

The hour goes quickly as they cruise along the waterfront of New Bedford exchanging greetings with the fishermen unloading their catch or working on their boats. As the crew heads back to Fairhaven they are delighted to see heads of the resident seals popping up here and there as they follow in the boat’s wake, curious, no doubt, of the lively conversation and bursts of laughter taking place.

Once back on shore, the boat secured, and safety equipment stowed away, the ladies usually linger a short while for a few last words and comments before returning to their busy lives… but not before glancing back at the harbor one last time feeling blessed to have been able to share another hour of quality time together, and knowing that in two days, weather permitting, they will come together to enjoy the camaraderie and pleasure of rowing with good friends once again.