Tuesday, May 20, 2008

OK Boat Trip, Days 24-26, 05/18-20/2008

If you recall from a few days (actually, weeks) ago, Rhonda's Dad asked "when are you going to slow down and enjoy the sights and cities a little?" Well Poppa, is 18 days in Memphis enough? LOL

While we certainly would have preferred to be in Muskogee by now, Memphis and the folks at the Yacht Club here have been wonderful to us. Here's a shot of some of the neighbors at a fish fry on Sunday evening. The main entree' was a 30-pound catfish freshly removed from the MS River. We had always heard that big catfish are not very good eating - not true. This was outstanding with salad, fries, hush puppies, slaw, potato salad, and Mexican dip on the side. There were at least 5 men around the deep-fry cooking - never could figure out who was in charge so I finally asked and was quickly told "the Mayor." Never realized the Mayor of Memphis was among us and actually he wasn't - Lanny is "The Mayor" of the Memphis Yacht Club. Apparently, Lanny has a real zeal for catching large fish. He has some serious bruises on his leg from the one that got away (not kidding).

That's Tara in the pink shirt below, "The Mayor" to her left, and Tara's Dad to his left. Tara's Mom and Dad were in town visiting from Florida.

The crowd grew as the evening progressed and we even had a couple of grandson twins to join us.

After the initial rush on the corn meal batter catfish, Dick (in the yellow shirt) moved in with his secret batter recipe, outstanding as well.

Since we'll be leaving tomorrow, we thought we'd pay tribute to the Memphis Yacht Club. Here's their T-shirt design and logo.

Did we say leaving tomorrow? Yes, the forecast is looking pretty good. It should be a beautiful day with a light wind on the river. We are planning an aggressive 136 miles which will put us on the White River for one night of anchoring out on Merisach Lake. That will be followed by another 60 miles or so on Thursday on the AR River to Island Harbor Marina at Pine Bluff, AR. The current for this leg of the trip is all below 100,000 cfs and this may be our best shot for a while. There's more rain forecast for the watershed area of the AR River so we may have to delay a little at Pine Bluff.

Anyhow, we'll spend today checking everything out and getting our provisions fully stocked. We should be able to keep the blog up to date now without relying on WiFi. When I was in Muskogee last week, Arrowhead (my employer) went ahead and got me an AT&T air card for our internet service at Three Forks since the WiFi at the River Center will not be up and running for a while yet. That is a tremendous help with our communication and planning while on the boat. Thanks, Joe.

In closing, anyone interested in how my bus trip went from Muskogee to Memphis last Saturday? That seemed like the easiest way to leave a vehicle in Muskogee and return to Memphis without Rhonda having to come and pick me up. I'd probably reconsider that option if faced with a similar decision again in the future. Actually, it wasn't that bad but we did stop at every town and fruit stand between here and there. Let's just say it expanded my horizons some.

Also, congratulations to Betty Harrison, our dear friend back at Bay Hill who watches over our condo while we're travelling. She has a new great-grandson, Trey.

See you in Pine Bluff.

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