The schedule calls for the ferry to depart at 6:00 p.m. - but often it doesn't leave until 7 or 7:30. We don't know who the captains are, but we know which one is piloting the ferry because of the speed of loading and the prompt departure. Sometimes the ferry is loaded so slowly you swear you could carry the vehicles on by hand and be faster - and other times they zip right along - into the big open doors and quickly positioned according to their disembarkment schedule.
Some captains blow the whistle - loud and long - some give a tiny toot - and some don't use the whistle at all. It is my favorite sound and I wait and wait for that moment - relishing every single second of the long whistles! It echos back and forth off the hills of Bellingham. No one speaks while the whistle blows!