Friday, February 29, 2008

Winter weekends on the boat:

On February 1st we received a call from Larry Kerkhoff at Smugglers to tell us not to be alarmed when we came down to our boat for the weekend - there had been some ice and wind damage to the docks. In spite of the warning, we were actually very surprised when we saw the damage. Spud poles on our dock were leaned over …..

and many of the fingers on that side of the dock were buckled…….

A lot of the boaters on our dock came down that weekend to check things out and there was a lot of talk about whether or not our boats should be moved, etc. But the lake was frozen and the insurance company was coming that Monday and Larry was going to start making some immediate repairs, so everyone decided to let their boats stay put for the time.

Keith and I and Hank and Lee again spent that weekend on our boats. We had dinner together on our boat and enjoyed the evening – but the whole damaged dock thing, had us a little stressed out as you can see.

Ok, I guess we weren’t really that stressed! Hank was able to take a phone call from Ron and Teana and Lee and I were able to balance drinks on our heads! I couldn’t decide whether to put my glass or the Maker’s bottle on my head – I was afraid people would get me confused with Lori on Ron and Teana’s blog – but I did the bottle anyway. I think Lee just missed her mouth and that’s why her glass ended up on her head – just kidding!

The really cold temperatures, ice and snow that we’ve had the last couple of weeks have kept us from spending a couple of weekends on the boat – but we’ll be back as soon as there is a break.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Let’s get it started:

Well, it started in June 2007. Keith and I took a Saturday to go to St. Louis/Wahoo Marine to look at a 47’ Gibson. I fell in love with the boat and I think I even rather boldly told another couple that came on board to look at it that “it was mine.” Anyway, things happened and that boat got away from us. In the mean time, a couple from Cincinnati, Jim and Denise, expressed interest in buying the Cotton Jenny II. Well, I think it was again love at first sight, because when Jim went to look at the engines with Keith, Denise told me – “Do not sell this boat to anyone else – we’re buying it.” And buy it, they did. On July 31st , up the river the Cotton Jenny II went without us!

So for the first time in 23 years, Keith and I were houseboatless – we didn’t know how to act or what to do with ourselves! So we did what anyone else would do, we went shopping! I remember when some fellow boaters from Four Seasons asked us what kind of boat we now wanted, we said another Gibson of course, and they said, “Gibson people are like that.” We ordered a brand new boat from the good people at Wahoo Marine and lo and behold, at around 5:00 PM, on cold and rainy, November 26th, our brand spanking new, beautiful 50’ Gibson Classic arrived!!!!

Woo hoo!!! Wa hoo hoo!

The weather cleared up and even warmed up some on Tuesday and we were able to load a lot of things on her while the delivery guys worked outside assembling the bridge, etc.

At about 4:00 PM, she was launched in Craig’s Creek Lake and on her way to her new home, Slip 319 at Smuggler’s Cove.

I tried to take a picture of her coming off the launching ramp, but was too excited to put my glasses on and couldn’t see what I was shooting! But, when Keith brought her around by the island, I was pretty sure if I just pointed the camera in the right direction, I would get a pretty good shot –

I’d say I nailed it!

Because it was after 7:00 when everyone left the boat - delivery guys and Gibson folks - and there wasn’t much room to move around all the “stuff” that we had been loading on all day, we went ahead and grabbed some dinner at Sunset Grill and spent the night at the motel instead of on our boat.

The next day, it was still sunny but had gotten a lot colder. Nonetheless, we started up our new boat, took her over to fill the fuel tanks and then headed out for a little ride on the river. In all of our boating years, we had never taken one of our boats out at the end of November! But it was a beautiful day and a beautiful river and we were all by ourselves – except for one tow boat. I was out on the bow and told Keith not to go too fast – but, from my mouth to his ear – we cleared the creek and I’m not sure just how fast we were going, all I know is I WAS FREEZING!!!!! Inspite of the cold, it was a great feeling to finally be out for a boat ride on our own boat – we had certainly become two boat bums spending time on everyone else’s boats.

Unfortunately Keith and I both got pretty sick – possibly from being out in the cold and rain so much - so we went home and didn’t come back until Friday, November 30th. – that’s when we spent our first night on our new boat! Even without running water, several portable heaters, and a port-a-potty, we felt like we had the most luxurious accommodations one could ever hope for. Our new boat is not only beautiful, but oh so comfortable.

We had to take a break from our boat to get through Christmas, but right after new years, we were back and have been spending almost every weekend on her and enjoying the good company of Hank and Lee Dein, who have been enjoying the winter weekends on their Harbor Master “Oddessey”.
When our boat was finished and before we had a chance to see it, Scott Bachman, Owner – Wahoo Marine, told us it was a beautiful vessel – he wasn’t kidding! WE ARE LOVING THE COTTON JENNY III!

Mary Jane And Keith