After a week of dodging huge barges on the Mississippi and Ohio rivers, plus 3 nights at anchor and un-seasonally hot temperatures we finally arrived at Paducah, Kentucky. We arrived with 6 other boats who are also doing the Great Loop. It was the first day the City Dock was open. We met the mayor!
If you would like to see the news story you can click here
I spent most of the day at the National Quilt Museum. It was delightful. But they don't allow photos of any sort so you will just have to take my word for it. They also don't allow you to use your cell phone in the museum so it was nice and quiet.
Tim found a Maritime museum, a Railroad museum and a Civil War museum. He was a happy man. Mostly he was happy because he didn't have to go to the quilt museum. Although they had an air conditioned conference room with overstuffed chairs and bottled water where I saw some patient (long-suffering) husbands resting.
What the heck?
I have heard about cities where the local fiber artists will knit coverings for the trees but I have never seen it in person until Paducah. This tree was one of the more colorful. The quilters left their mark on trees downtown, too.
I thought it was delightful.
Tim, of course, thought it was the weirdest thing he had ever heard of. I knew he had a pocketknife with him so I watched him closely the rest of the afternoon...the trees in Paducah are safe.
Looking back on our First day. We get to the marina and are ready to go to dinner. And I hear a funny sound. Funny sounds on a boat aren't funny. Open the engine compartment and the bilge pump is running but not sucking water. Dang.
Bad news is the impeller came off the end of the pump. Good news is we have a spare pump. Bad news is pump is located at the very bottom of the engine compartment because, of course, that is where it needs to be to pump out the water that shouldn't be there. Good news is Tim can do 99% of the work and only needs a small person's long arm for the very last 1%.
I am now a boat engine mechanic. I think I deserve a T-shirt.
First day, first challenge conquered.
We walked a few blocks from the the marina at Henry Harbor in search of a boat part. We didn't find the part but we did find a great small town cafe/bakery. Cinnamon rolls as big as your head? Yes, please, we'll take 4.
Then we saw the little homemade pies. We should have tossed the boring, healthy stuff in our refrigerator and bought many, many more.
This one was our 10:30am coffee break for 2 days.
It would have been wrong of me to eat my piece and Tim's piece, too. Right? Tempting, but wrong.
I came close but it would have been wrong,
Dang, that little pie was good.
Tim loves Spam. All flavors of Spam. I knew that if I wanted to make sure he was happy to dine on the boat there better be Spam. I think I nailed it.
The rest of the stuff on the boat falls into 3 categories. Tools to fix the boat, rigging to tie the boat up to docks & locks, and kitchen crap. Guess who is in charge of which areas?
This boat is 25 foot long. It’s sort of like a smallish camper…that can sink. Everything that comes on the boat has to “earn its real estate” which means it better do more than one thing. And we have learned to use vertical space on the walls which means we are the king and queen of Command hooks. Anything that can live on a Command hook has a spot. You can look forward to a Command hook tour in the future. It will be epic.
We leave in a very few days. Then anything we forgot will either be purchased somewhere along the way or we will simply use what we have. Yes, I packed the can opener. I checked…twice.
Tim gave a presentation at the local library on 8-7-2017 detailing the planning process for our Great Loop Adventure. The photo shown here is a slide from the PowerPoint showing you the route we plan to follow with stars on some of the highlights.
We will probably stay in a marina most nights but we will also spend some nights “on the Hook”. That’s what the boating folk call anchoring out. The good thing about marinas? Showers and electricity! The good thing about “on the Hook”? It’s free. I’ll let you know how that works out.
We are still focused on Sept 10-ish for departure. Tim’s brother and his wife will bring their suitcases and move into our house while we are gone. They are retired. They just sold their home. They put their stuff in storage. The timing is perfect. My cats even like my sister-in-law more than they like me.
It’s all good.
Tim and I are preparing to live on our R25 Ranger Tug as we travel The Great Loop starting in Sept. We are going to be away from home for a year. One year. 52 weeks. I'm just now realizing all the details that must be dealt with before we launch on the Great Loop adventure. But we can do this!
I have a list. Of course I have a list. Tim says his list is in his head. I am concerned...but our lists don't overlap so I guess the only things that may fall through the cracks are things on neither of our lists. Or as we often say, "What could possibly go wrong?????"
I'll post here as we get closer to the launch date with things that are ready.
Tim and I started our Great Loop Adventure on 9-11-2017 in Ottowa, Illinois. We put the boat on a trailer and drove 9 hours from our home in South Dakota to Heritage Harbor Marina in Ottowa to put her in the water. Tim's brother, Dan, drove the truck and trailer back to our house. Thanks Dan!