From: (Bryant Vann)
Subject: Saint Maries Citty and a Rio Update
Date: Sept. 14, 1999

One of the neat places to visit in the Chesapeake Bay area is the site of the first capital of 
Maryland, St. Mary's City.  It's about two hours by trawler from the Bay -- up the Potomac 
River and then up the St. Mary's River to Church Point and Horseshoe Bend -- a gorgeous 
anchorage.  But don't go there expecting to find a city today...  Today it's the site of St. 
Mary's College and the archaeological digs and partial restoration of the early 17th century 
town.  Still, it's a lot of fun -- the college because being around all those youngsters makes us 
feels a LOT less like the geezers we are (and they've even heard of my son's bluegrass rock 
band, Leftover Salmon* -- some even LIKE them!) and it's always neat to see how folks 
lived nearly 400 years ago.  For we nautically inclined among us, there's a reproduction of 
the Dove, one of the two ships that brought the first settlers to Maryland.  This ship is 
crewed by talented actors who delight in greeting and informing visitors by portraying the 
sailors of the day -- ALWAYS staying "in character!"  (I DEFY you to get them to break 
character -- though Rio came close -- more later...)  There are a number of different 
demonstrations, and this time we were delighted by a lesson in loading and unloading casks 
(tunns, barrels, and hogsheads) with VERY cleaver use of multiple tackles.

The Dove
[Check the schedule at the restoration, and you'll get to see them fire the Dove's gun...]
The Dove's gun a'blazin'
We've been there several times before, but THIS time we stumbled upon a colonial trial of several accused thieves in the restored State House -- wonderfully performed by more actors from the group that staffs the restoration. I shan't give away the plot -- it's a REAL suspense thing -- with several unexpected twists and turns -- AND a surprise ending. However, at one point a fight breaks out in the courtroom, and right on cue, Rio (who had been sitting quietly and attentively on his Admiral's lap this far) goes into his protection mode -- fearing that these people were really hurting each other! He barked and barked and barked and would NOT be quiet until they stopped the fight! Afterwards the "judge" came over (STILL in character) and commended him for his staunch defense of the accused and noted that they other actors were probably already spreading the word of his "performance." Sure enough, an hour or so later the Admiral was getting a Coke from the snack bar and the purveyor said "a little dog" had delighted ALL the actors by his impromptu contribution! Here's a photo of Rio's "playhouse!"
State House
Quite a delight indeed. If you're in that area, don't overlook the restoration -- and don't forget to tell them you heard about the little dog that joined in the show! I'm sure they will remember this for a while! - Bryant (waiting out Floyd and "Gert" (sp?) with KK-42 Salty Lady in Galesville) PS. If you're in Solomons for Trawlerfest (or otherwise), take a look in Washburn's boatyard. If you see KK-42 Traveller there, she's our "old friend" After Sail! * Unabashed plug (please forgive me Mr. Listmeister) -- buy their just-released album for Disney's Hollywood Records, "The Nashville Sessions" with guests Taj Mahal, Waylon Jennings, Earl and Randy Scruggs, Del and Ronnie McCoury, Bela Fleck, Sam Bush, John Popper, Lucinda Williams, and MANY more! This is music for "feet," not "heads." You, too, may feel like a geezer no more (and my kid maybe won't have to find a day job)!