Just Relax travel blog

Chicago five miles out

Chicago ten miles out

Chicago Lock

Chicago River

Chicago twenty miles out

8/29-8/31 Benton Harbor.

Here we are in Benton Harbor/St. Joe, MI after leaving Muskeegon, Hartshorn Marina. The folks at Hartshorn took great care of us-perfect you could say. This is a must stop marina. They took us to the airport, kept our food in their refridge...We got to see the town when we rented a car at the Gerald Ford Airport on our return That was cheaper than taking a cab. Sincew the winds were from the east, even though there were small craft advisories out, we decided to chance it and make South Haven. The waters were calm enough, so we decided to make it a very ling day of almost 90 miles and come here as Sue read it was a great town & only 55 miles from Chicago, a do-able distance to cross over. We will do this with at least 2 other boats. LK Michigan has really kicked us, but the small towns we have seen (about a dozen) are worth it. We met our neighbor's folks, Ken & Myrna Duthler from Grand Haven who were great hosts showing us their lovely town & home. Their son & family just moved to the UAE, so we will miss them greatly. Their friends, Jim & Mary took us to a neat cooking school for an open house. We sampled some great fare & visited their nice home on the lake. We are touring Benton Harbor with their neat painted bears statutes all over. Museum. Stayed at Pier 33 Marina.

8/28 Mollie

Our visit home was a good one overall finding the kids in great shape & visiting many friends. It was great seeing Carolyn's new engagement ring, the Darwins coming over & of course getting to take care of the grandkids while Amy/Jesse took a much needed vacation. However, Mollie, 18 yrs old passed this day. She was a great pet that was John's baby. It was a tough decision, but the doctor who kept her in great shape for all these years, said he was not optimistic. Guilt will hopefully fade as we feel like we abandoned the pets sometimes. Mollie gave Sue one last wake up call on Monday morning as she used to (at 0500), just like old times, making the decision even harder. The kids surprised us with a new toy room, all decorated up in Carolina Panther colors & a new pool table. We have not stopped talking about that. It was too much. Sue & John are much better players than Jesse/Amy, so they better practice up for our return home at Christmas. Sue is way ahead on Suduko's now by at least 15 games.

9/5 Chicago, IL

After a decent crossing of Lk Mich, we are in DuSable Marina in downtown. We left before sun up to catch better water. As we are leaving the inlet of Benton Harbor, we come into about 100 sailboats entering the harbor. John says, Holy $%^&! They happen to have a night race & we chose to leave as they are finishing. In the dark, we maneuver through them, carefully, as sailboaters hate motor boaters (they call us stinkpots). What a sight it was coming across and seeing the city grow as we neared. We are at best of friends Whitley's for several days. They are the perfect hosts, even inviting some of John's family who live a couple of hrs away to visit. We traveled by train to see the art musuem, which houses some famous paintings from Money, O'Keefe, Renoir, but John was disapppointed that he did not see any originals of dogs playing poker. Rainy here, but that does not matter. Friends of the Whitleys, Donna & Dave, had us over for a party playing Bocce for the first time. Of course John won - he never loses, or he thinks. Bocce is an italian lawn game played with balls that you kinda toss between like a bowling ball & horseshoes. Keeping i touch with many loopers as we prepare for the rivers. We leave Thurs, most likely.

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