I’ve got an old mule and her name is Sal, fifteen years on the Erie Canal…

Yes friends we have made it all the way to the entrance to the Erie Canal. Tomorrow we enter the first flight of locks and enter a new phase of our journey. We are in totally fresh water now and the boat even feels better. There are no tides and little current to contend with as we motor along. Altogether life aboard Cbay is getting better.

We got up this morning and began washing the boat at Coeyman’s, pronounced “Quee mons” by the locals, before the heat wave began. By 0900 we were underway with a nice clean boat and only a bit over 20 miles to cover. So we eased along and enjoyed the sights through Albany and Troy.

Outside Troy I saw this sight and it made me ill. You see this is a perfect example of the idiotic thinking that is ruining the USA. I will explain whether you want to read about it or not.

The crushed cars are delivered from the surrounding countryside. They are then cut up into scrap like the pile you see in the picture. Then they are loaded on barges and sent to a scrap metal recycling plant where the various metals are separated and processed. Then the metal is shipped to China because we do not make anything here. The Chinese then make it into cheap things we think we need and we buy it when it comes back as a favored nation trade partner. So what is idiotic about that?

First, we the taxpayers provide financial incentive to those who scrap their old clunkers. Second, we provide financial incentive to the scrap yard. Third, we provide financial incentive to the recycler as a “green industry”. And finally we give tax breaks to those who import these goods. So the Chinese, to whom we owe our souls, get metal at a greatly reduced price by our government¬†subsidizing the industries that are producing the metal. They use that cheap metal to produce even cheaper goods than they otherwise might, thus making it impossible for us to produce those goods here at such a price. And we are so happy to get an electric fan from Walmart at a bargain price. We think we are getting ahead when all we are doing from beginning to end is cutting our own throats. And we never learn because we want to be green and help everyone including our competition. Enough. Back to boating. Sorry I got distracted.

We are docked tonight at Waterford which is a neat little town at the eastern entrance to the Erie. We are tied up at the Welcome Center just 200 feet from the lock doors. We rode bikes to the store and picked up a few items. Dinner was at McCreadies, an upscale restaurant where we had “duck in a box” as an appetizer. It was duck sausage baked in a puff pastry and sliced. Then it is put in a Chinese takeout box and served with an orange marmalade and horseradish sauce. Best duck I have eaten yet. I may eat more duck in the future.

Cbay is primed and ready to go. Come enter the great Erie Canal with us as we make our way toward Canada.