The week has been as slow as the Mississippi…full of muddy water and industry-ridden shores. Chicago already seems like eons ago and we are so (!) far removed from the luxuries we indulged in there.
Getting back on the water from our two week respite was invigorating. Re-reading my sentence makes me close my eyes and think of the morning we officially pulled away, heading down the Calumet. Kind of like riding a bike. Untying our lines, pulling up the fenders, pushing off from the dock and grabbing my Waterway Guide to check on the exact distance to the first lock. Its truly become a routine, second nature, a way of life…and I think its safe to say, it suits *us*.
TODAY we’re putzing down the Mississippi River. The days are long and slow going due to waterlogged stumps and branches along the way, but i’ve decided that it seems to fit the pace of life along the River. Each small town port has its unique charm and attraction but the lasting impression from this portion of the Loop will definitely be the sincerity and the kindness of the people.
We were able to meet more blog followers in Peoria! Steve and Julie were incredibly kind and FUN! Even inviting us back to their marina for *docktails* and to meet their fellow boaters.
From Peoria we hit all of the obligatory stops – including, of course, St. Louis! The Arch, the Anheuser-Busch clydesdales and dinner at the legendary “Fast Eddie’s” didn’t disappoint.
The upcoming days will entail some 270 miles with no marina/fuel stops….so we’re gearing up for a few nights on the hook until we can make our way to Kentucky Lake/Nashville. The last port before making the long haul, Hoppies Marine Services, is managed by Fern (who Tom and I have dubbed the “Matriarch of the Mississippi”). She offered an afternoon dock talk regarding the river conditions and what to expect along the way. A tried and true staple of the Great Loop! Credit: Captain Dawn’s Crazy Adventures. (Check out Dawn’s blog for a completely unique Mississippi River experience!)