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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

The "A Dream Becomes Reality!: Part II" Story

Newspapers telling the tale of the Cape May-Lewes Ferry.  The
paper on the left is a reproduction from June 25, 1964 while the
paper on the right was given to me by my friend Just Sue who
got the paper during a visit to Cape May during this summer.
It was an ordinary day.  Sitting in the long glass runway of the Cape May Ferry Terminal that connects the ticket counters with the loading docks.  We can see the ferry in the distance making it's crossing from Lewes, Delaware to Cape May, New Jersey.  Yesterday I told about our visit to the terminal and some of the history associated with the ferry and today I will finish my two-part story with some photos showing the ferry entering the waters in front of the terminal and disembarking after docking at one of the four locations along the dock.  
Click to enlarge this map
showing the coastline and
the route of the ferry.
As I was watching the ferry off in the distance, a man dressed in a blue uniform walked toward me.  I stopped him and asked him to tell me a little bit about what was going to happen. He told me to look at the US flag near the water.  It was blowing to the left.  He told me that the Captain will use the wind direction to determine which side of the glass exit corridor he will pull into.  Told me that the water along the dock is about 20 feet deep and they constantly have to dredge the area to maintain that depth.  He said a few weeks ago there was a motorcycle rally in Ocean City, MD and about 70 bikes boarded the ferry for one of the trips over to Ocean City the day before.  The roar was thunderous so he surmised that the majority of the bikes were Harleys.  Earlier in the spring there were close to 40 Corvettes which boarded and headed to the Corvette parade that is held every year on the Boardwalk in Ocean City, MD.  I can remember when Carol and I drove our Vette in the parade years ago.  We drove the entire distance on land, not knowing that it would have been quicker had we taken the ferry over to Lewes from Cape May.  I asked how many passengers has he ever seen  travel at one time and he estimated about 700 made a trip one time for an event he wasn't sure about.  Well, time to post a few photos and give you a brief description of what is happening as the ferry docks and disembarks both passengers and vehicles.  My photos were taken through a very thick glass window and may have some reflections to them from the bright afternoon sun.  It was another extraordinary day in the life of an ordinary guy.



Front of the Cape May Ferry Terminal.
The lobby of the terminal where you purchase your tickets.
Off in the distance you can see a large vessel.  The ferry has left from the upper left side of the photo, which is Delaware, and is headed in the direction of Cape May, NJ.  This photo and the next several photos were taken through a rather thick glass encased hallway, so reflections can be seen in most of the photos.
This shows the water side of the terminal with a mini-golf course, seating area and food court off in the center portion.
My wife,Carol, and sister-in-law, Kathy, are walking in the glass hallway that lead from the terminal to the passenger loading platform.
This is a loading/unloading ramp where vehicles can exit or enter the ferry.
Seating area below is for the restaurant.  The colored units in the center are concrete covered with rubber that direct the ferry into the docking area.  If you look carefully to the left center you can see the glass hallway which extends to a loading platform for passengers to enter/exit the ferry.
Here comes the ferry into the harbor.  To the center left is a flag flying that helps the Captain determine which side of the loading dock he will select.
Passing through to the other side of the loading dock. Arrival time was 4:10 PM.
The front of the ferry showing vehicles and some passengers on their motorcycles. 
Lowering the exit ramp.
Here you can see some of the passengers on the upper decks of the ferry.  They will exit on the right side of the photo.
Passengers coming off the ferry.
All sizes of vehicles exited the ferry including this 18-wheeler.
This dog in the RV's large window had a great view for his passageway from Delaware to New Jersey.
My guess is that the Captain came below to talk to some of the travelers.
A marble map on the floor of the terminal building shows the two states of New Jersey on the right and Delaware on the left joined by the blue water.  The little white mark is the ferry crossing.  Certainly not to scale.

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