December 2017

Farewell

I’m trying to sum up our entire trip in ONE photograph. Whew…just looking at all we’ve seen and done is overwhelming and then to know we’re not going forward makes me cry and who wants to cry?     I need to do this; I cannot bear to do this.

Poor Don, at least I can cry. He must bear this horrendous disappointment inside. His plan was four years in the making! FOUR years! Nights and weekends were spent dreaming and preparing and plotting; buying equipment, appropriate housewares and clothing, inventorying all things necessary to sustain us for 15 months (not unlike preparing for a climb to Everest). He researched the perfect boat. He learned navigational aids. He spent hours conversing the pros and cons with experienced Loopers. Two years prior to our launch he found a marina on the Columbia River in Oregon five hours from home where we could park Panacea and learn all her infinite details. We spent most summer weekends there. We flew us to Tennessee for the Annual Fall Rendezvous of the AGLCA (America’s Great Loop Cruisers Association). All Don ever thought of was this great adventure upon reaching 65…the only thing in his Bucket List. The ONLY thing he wanted to do. It absorbed all his after-work attention. It gave him something to live for. It was, and continues to be, his ultimate dream.

There are blessings associated with our return: There’s the sale of Don’s firm and transfer of ownership. There’s the delight of spending time with our grandsons. There’s being in our paradise of Idaho and running whitewater while fishing for salmon and steelhead and sturgeon.

So while we’re not miserable, we are brokenhearted to terminate our grand adventure and return to employment! Bittersweet.

Currently, we plan to revisit the Great Loop in September 2019…next year. Two years away. Whimper.

We meant some phenomenal people:

Nick and Barb who accompanied us, challenged us, AND entertained us.

Steve and Teresa who encouraged our faith and determination, and laughed with us.

Scott and Karen on Last Call

Eric and Alyson on Catan

Richard and Inga on Bon Foyage, Legacy Marina, Fort Myers

Harry and Mary, Legacy Marina, Fort Myers

Ken and Cathy, Legacy Marina, For Myers

 

If we never meet again, we will never forget.

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