Chi town, the windy City

As we approached the Chicago skyline, I expected that we would just fly, this being the windy city and all.  When the wind died, and we had to motor the final way, MBA read to me from the cruising guide that its not named “The Windy City” because of the wind, but because of all the hot air the politicians blew in the 1800’s.  I wonder how much has changed?

We had a wonderful time in Grand Haven, in spite of 3 days of hard rain.  My cousin that I used to visit all the time in Farmington Hills, MI, now lives on the coast of Lake Michigan, and came to visit with us, and take us for a tour of the area.  We went to the State Park Visitors center, which had amazing accounts of the sand, and the sand dunes.  How they were formed, the vegetation on them, and how they all interact with the animals and nature.

We then had dinner in one of the local restaurants, and it was delicious, but mostly it was the visit with a relative that made this stop the most enjoyable.  Thanks Eugene!!

From Grand Haven we went to Saugatuck to anchor, then to Benton Harbor (stayed in St. Joseph) for a couple days to wait for a nice weather window to cross Lake Michigan.  The window came Friday, with South Winds 10-20 knots, so we should be able to sail across.  They were calling for 5 – 7 foot waves, which could make the ride somewhat uncomfortable (MBA is getting annoyed at removing the mattress every night to dry it out, guess my rebedding leaves something to be desired), but the 7 footers never came, so we just had a wonderful sail.

About 20 miles out we saw the Chicago Skyline, I felt it must be an illusion, or reflection because we were so far out, but it was not.  What we saw was the top half of the skyline, as we got closer, we saw more and more of the lower skyline.  Breathtaking for sure!

The weather is finally warmer now, it was 77 Friday, and calling for 81 Saturday, so there were hundreds of boats in the harbors coming into Chicago.  It was nothing like any of the large cities we have been in so far, and I am expecting a fun (and incredibly expensive) visit.  MBA has made the decision to have the mast shipped by truck from Chicago to Mobile, AL (I was no part of this decision; I made a cradle to carry the mast while in Drummond, remember?)  I think she did that on purpose to help destroy my budget numbers!

Our hopes to visit the old Abby (the ferry that used to run PEI and was sold to the Columbia Yacht Club for their clubhouse) were dashed; they will not let us visit nor stop there.  That was a disappointment; we had been looking forward to that stop and some visiting.  C’est la vie, I guess the boating community is changing.

Our plans are to drop our sails Saturday, unstep the mast Sunday, the truck has been arranged to pick it up Tuesday, then we will spend a night in downtown Chicago at the wall, where I can visit the fountain, then it will be motoring down the rivers.  Just like Huckleberry Finn.

The pictures on this posting are of my cousin Eugene and I, and Mary Beth, and one of the two of us together (we don’t get enough of these), and the Chicago skyline.

Love to everyone,

Joe & MaryBeth Amelia
S/V “Pot ‘O’ Gold”
soon to be mastless in Chicago

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