Red Right Returning

A few days ago I posted photos of the harbour at Leamington, Ontario which brought back a lot of memories for me.  When I was a child, my family didn’t spend each weekend driving to a cottage.  Instead, we sailed in our floating cottage.  Therefore, I learned the rules of boating at a very young age.  Taking photos of the channel markers at the mouth of the harbour reminded me of a few phrases that were drilled into my head to remember how to navigate on a boat.  Navigational lights are simple – green and red.  At night we had to remember to turn on the lights on our sailboat so that other boats could see us coming.  I knew that the light on one side was red and the other side was green, but it was hard to remember which was which.  My Dad taught me a very easy way to remember.  First, in boating lingo you have to remember that left is “port” and right is “starboard”.  So, all you have to remember is that port wine is red, and you will know that the red light is on the left side of the boat.

When it comes to navigating a channel or harbour entrance, the phrase that I was taught early on was “red right returning”.  What that means is that when you are returning to port, the red navigational marker will be on your right.  Simple, right?  After learning those phrases, I thought so!  So, here are the photos that brought my memories to the surface. It was mid-day and very sunny, so the lighting was not ideal for photography, but I still really like them.  They are like little mini lighthouses :).

This entry was posted in Blogging, Boating, Colours, Curves, Lines & Shapes, Harbours, Leamington, Ontario, Memories, Photography, Sailing and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Red Right Returning

  1. J. G. Burdette says:

    There’s also an interesting little poem about the “Rules of the Road”:
    When all three lights I see ahead,
    I turn to Starboard and show my Red:
    Green to Green, Red to Red,
    Perfect Safety — Go Ahead.

    But if to Starboard Red appear,
    It is my duty to keep clear —
    To act as judgment says is proper:
    To Port or Starboard, Back or Stop her.

    And if upon my Port is seen
    A Steamer’s Starboard light of Green,
    I hold my course and watch to see
    That Green to Port keeps Clear of me.

    Both in safety and in doubt
    Always keep a good look out.
    In Danger, with no room to turn,
    Ease her, Stop her, Go Astern.

    Enjoyed this post!

  2. port and left are also the shorter words with right and starboard being longer, that’s how I remembered in my sailing days

  3. sayvan says:

    Great shots… it looks like your new camera is working out perfect for you….

  4. zelmare says:

    Sadly I don’t know anything about sailing, so I found the facts interesting. Love the lighthouses. 🙂

  5. dorannrule says:

    A very educational post Cindy! And lovely lighthouse shots. If I were able to remember your instructions, I would undoubtedly plow right into those rocks! Port =Red Wine? Starboard to Right = Roundabout? Left? Homeward Bound? Have I got those right? 🙂

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