I’d like to think I’d recognize the names of several of the large freighters that use the Soo Locks, but not the smaller ships. We climbed to the top floor of the viewing platform to get a great angle on the lock-action.
We could see the huge Edwin H. Gott freighter rising ponderously in the second lock over, and watched the Sam Laud prepare to enter the lock (up/westbound) right in front of us, then ease in, staying close to our side. The Gott I’d heard of, but the Laud I don’t remember. The disembodied voice on the speaker said the Laud was smaller (river class, I believe) and thus was used for the smaller harbors, and consequently repeatedly has grounded. Oops. Downside of smaller harbors….
Started chatting with the folks on both sides of us and a lady by herself to our right said she was there to pick up her husband the captain of the Laud going off a 60-day shift (for 30 days off!). Sure enough, on the deck, as the Laud slowly rose, we could see a guy with a backpack and duffle waiting for the deck to reach the level of the sidewalk. Then he debarked, showed papers to an official, then walked through the fence-gate, and he and the lady were smiling and in each other’s arms.