One time, we were stuck on the free wall in the town of Joliet, Illinois, due to heavy flooding on the Illinois River when we met a French family — parents and three teenagers. Soon after we tied up on the end of one of the t-docks we were looking over at the t-dock just north of us and noticed a Looper burgee prominently displayed on the bow of a beautiful Nordhavn boat. After calling to each other across the fairway, brief introductions were made and a plan to dinghy over was shortly arranged. We love this shot of the time we met up with a few boats on Elbow Cay in the Abaco Islands. Diane, Charlotte, and Linda are all in our soon to be published book: They encouraged us to look them up when we got to their hometown of Fairhope, Alabama, which we have done on both of our Loop trips. We would spend some time cruising together then we would go our separate ways because of different schedules and interests, but keeping in touch all the while to see if our paths might cross again, if so we would make plans to hook up. In this minute introduction period we exchanged boat cards before we were both on our way into the Mississippi River.
Bradenton, Florida was one of the anchorages where we met up with Wade and Suzie for a one-night stay. Three of us happened to be from Michigan. They encouraged us to look them up when we got to their hometown of Fairhope, Alabama, which we have done on both of our Loop trips. Johns River in Florida. One time, we were stuck on the free wall in the town of Joliet, Illinois, due to heavy flooding on the Illinois River when we met a French family — parents and three teenagers. On Sunday, we squeezed in Brantley and Brenda friends of Louis and Diane, we had met them a few months ago , on Reel Estate mid-afternoon. In this minute introduction period we exchanged boat cards before we were both on our way into the Mississippi River. When Jim was helping our friend, Rick Garton, move a boat south down the ICW, just after we completed our first Loop, he ran into two boaters walking on the dock in Waterford, New York. We have several ports to visit, on our trek south, where friends are waiting for us to stop. Five boats, good times. We find that these skills are imperative when living in the close confines of a foot boat. One of the first things we do when we arrive at a marina is check out the other boats to see if there is anyone there we know. John was now helping Bob take his boat back south for the winter. Soon after we tied up on the end of one of the t-docks we were looking over at the t-dock just north of us and noticed a Looper burgee prominently displayed on the bow of a beautiful Nordhavn boat. We were so focused on the overall undertaking and preparation there seemed to be little time to comprehend what other advantages lay in store. We were stopping at the town dock, for just a few minutes, to run into town to pick up our mail we had arranged for a package of mail to be sent to Grafton about a week before. They were on a five-year trip sailing around the world. This was where we first met Mike and Carol Gordon, also our first Looper encounter. The Gordons were three quarters of the way through their trip and had a lot of good information to share with us. We have paid a visit to the Gordons several times when traveling through their lovely hometown of Fairhope, Alabama. Whether we are standing still at our homeport marina or actively traveling, we are all ready to meet and greet each other with useful information or a helping hand, funny or interesting stories, usually followed with food and good cheer. One of our favorite stories about making new friends began with a stop in Grafton, Illinois, which is located at the confluence of the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers. During the initial days of our first Loop we were in our own little bubble and quite content to meander by ourselves, first down the Michigan coastline from Charlevoix to Frankfort then, after we crossed Lake Michigan, continuing down the Wisconsin coast and on to Chicago. We are all migrating south towards Florida for the winter. Diane, Charlotte, and Linda are all in our soon to be published book:
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