Thursday, September 27, 2007

Bay Springs Lake

We called Chuck & Pip aboard "Miss Pip" Wednesday afternoon, September 19th, and told them we had arrived; that we had spent the day catching up on the blog and some of our many e-mails; and that we hoped to see them out on the water as soon as they were ready to come anchor out. They called back a short time later and asked if we would mind if they came over in their dinghy. They arrived around 6:00 p.m. and we spent the next couple of hours visiting and catching up. We had last seen them at Cuba Landing in August when we were on our way to Clarksville via the Cumberland River.

This is the main lake view from the back of "Life's2Short."

"Life's2Short" pulled in to a sandy beach with the main lake in the background.

Another view of our cozy little spot on Bay Springs.

The Captain got a much needed and long overdue hair cut from the Admiral on Thursday and also spent several more hours trying to get through our e-mail backlog. Around 3:00 p.m. we decided to make a run to the marina to get some ice, but when we called to let Chuck & Pip know we were heading over, Chuck said they were getting ready to come anchor out with us so we sat tight and they showed up in "Miss Pip" a few hours later with our ice. We then dinghied over to their boat for a great dinner of chilled shrimp and fresh grilled corn on the cob and enjoyed a beautiful evening with good friends.

Another boat named "Bonnie Lass" came out Friday and anchored in a cove across the lake from us. We originally saw "Bonnie Lass" in Mobile in early May of 2006 when we first purchased "Life's2Short" and moved it from St. Petersburg to Mobile before going back to Missouri to finish our final weeks of work, sell the house, etc. Bay Springs Marina is the current home of "Bonnie Lass" and Chuck & Pip have gotten to know Mike & Julia since their arrival here several weeks ago, so they took their dinghy over and visited with them Friday afternoon.

Since we were having visitors from Pickwick for the weekend, we took dinner over to "Miss Pip" Friday evening and enjoyed another great meal and wonderful evening together.

"Bonnie Lass" is on the left and "Miss Pip" is on the right. The "Bonnie Lass" toured through our cove on its way back to the marina Friday afternoon.

Another shot of the "Bonnie Lass" by itself.

A Ranger bass boat came in to the cove and tied up to "Miss Pip" Saturday morning, and Chuck called a short time later to invite us over to visit with Mike & Julia of "Bonnie Lass." Shortly after returning to "Life's2Short," Chuck & Pip headed back to the marina and Tena & Keith from Pickwick arrived in their 21-foot Sea Ray.  Around 4:00 p.m., we left in the Sea Ray to go over to the marina where Chuck was intently watching the Texas Tech/OSU game which, unfortunately, Texas Tech lost. It was a good game, though, and could easily have gone the other way.

While we were at the marina, Todd and Keith managed to finagle a tour of "Kaleidoscope," a huge catamaran that the owner designed and constructed in seven pieces in his backyard on the west coast and then had the pieces hauled to the ocean where the craft was assembled before making its way from California, through the Panama Canal, to this part of the world.

We intended to get a picture of it to post on the blog but we didn't have our camera with us at the time and didn't get back over there before we left Bay Springs. Suffice it to say that it is approximately 45 feet wide and 110 feet long and looks like something out of a science fiction movie, kind of like the Starship Enterprise off Star Trek only square instead of round! It truly is a novelty on the water and if we cross paths with it again, we'll be sure to take a photo to share.

Saturday was Chuck's birthday and several dock friends gathered after the game to celebrate the occasion. Pip made chili and a wonderful macaroni & cheese casserole and Chuck grilled brats and peppers & onions. There were also a number of other dishes far too numerous to mention, along with a small birthday cake from Pip and Key Lime pie provided by Julia. On the way back to "Life's2Short," Keith got a little too close to shore in his Sea Ray and hit a submerged tree with the outdrive; fortunately, no damage was done and we arrived safely back at "Life's2Short" a few minutes later.

Todd & Keith taking a dinghy ride to shore Sunday morning to fillet a catfish.

Keith & Todd taking a quick lake bath off the swim deck. Aren't they cute?

I fixed breakfast enchiladas for Tena & Keith Sunday morning and then they headed back to Pickwick around noon.  Bud (Iceman) called about an hour later and said he might ride his Sea Doo down from Pickwick.  Mo from "MOTU" came in to the anchorage about 2:30 and Bud arrived an hour or so after Mo, after having gone to the marina to get gas and visit with Chuck & Pip. Mo swam over from her boat about 4:30 and Chuck & Pip came out in their dinghy a little while later and we all sat on the sundeck visiting until dark. Bud had intended to go back to Pickwick that afternoon but we convinced him to spend the night with us instead of making the long run back after having only been here such a short time.

Bud left a few minutes past 8:00 Monday morning and we had a relatively quiet day.  Our friend Kelly from Pickwick had called Sunday saying he might come down in his Bayliner and stay overnight Monday, but when we called him Monday afternoon he said he had decided not to so we were visitor-free.  Just as Todd was getting ready to go to the marina for ice Monday afternoon, we had a brief shower that only lasted long enough to get the canvas wet and make things steamier than they already were.

Mo invited us over for cocktails and hors d' oeuvres Monday evening so we dinghied over to "MOTU" around 5:00 and stayed until after dark. When we returned to the boat, we discovered that Chuck had called and invited us to "Miss Pip" for leftover brats but it was too late by the time we retrieved the message.

Tuesday was another quiet day in the cove and Todd spent a little time out fishing in the dinghy.  Mid-afternoon a boat named "Marabob" came in, anchored behind us and proceeded to spend several hours visiting with Mo aboard "MOTU." We were then invited over to "Marabob" for cocktails Tuesday evening. Bob will be 80 years old in March and has been boating alone since his wife, Maralyn, died about five years ago. We spent some time visiting with Mo and Bob and then came back to the boat for a quick dinner and a quiet evening.

By late morning Wednesday, George & Mary aboard "Love Knot" made their way in to the cove and anchored near Mo, and Chuck & Pip and their friends George & Fran brought their boats over from the marina to anchor out with us, so we had a total of six boats in our little cove. We had met George at Midway Marina last fall when Chuck & Pip were there and were glad he was able to make the trip to Bay Springs for a visit. George is in his mid-80's, is currently on his eleventh boat and has many stories about a wealth of boating experiences.

We dinghied over to "Miss Pip" mid-afternoon and spent several hours talking and sharing stories and snacking on the wonderful hors d' oeuvres provided by the ladies.  Mo ("MOTU"), George & Mary ("Love Knot") and Bob ("Marabob") joined us for a while on "Miss Pip" so the whole gang was there!

"Love Knot" in its anchorage behind and to the left of "Life's2Short."

Mo pulled anchor and headed out about 10:30 Thursday morning and we followed suit a couple of hours later, shortly after Chuck & Pip and George & Fran headed back to Bay Springs Marina. We got through the first three locks on the Tenn-Tom and stopped in at Midway Marina to pump out, refill with water and get ice where we met up with Mo who had pulled in to get some fuel and make a quick grocery run to Fulton, MS. The weather was still hot today, even though we had some rain this morning and may have more this evening.

We are currently anchored out with Mo just above Fulton Lock and will leave here with her in the morning to do three more locks before pulling in to Blue Bluff, across from the entrance to Aberdeen Marina, tomorrow afternoon. We will miss Pickwick and our good friends there, as well as Bay Springs, but it is time to make our way to Demopolis to begin the boat chores that await us there, primarily having the boat hauled out and put "on the hard" so we can paint its bottom, a job I am not looking forward to! We should reach Demopolis within a week and will try to post an update shortly after we arrive.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Back to the Waterfall for a Final Visit

On Tuesday, August 28th, the Captain and I walked up the hill from the Clarksville city dock to get a few bags of ice and a couple of milk shakes from Kelly's Big Burger before beginning the journey back down the Cumberland toward Kentucky Lake. We finally pulled away from the dock about 11:00 a.m. and ended up anchoring in Dry Creek about 6:00 p.m. that evening. The water there was very cool and felt great after another hot day on the water.

We stopped at Prizer Point around 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday to fill up with water and get ice and also to get credit for the 30-amp plug end that we purchased last time we were there to repair what we thought was a problem with our 50-amp splitter. The problem turned out to be with the electrical box on the dock so the owner agreed to give us credit back for the plug, which was cool.

We arrived in Smith Bay on Kentucky Lake around 3:30 that afternoon and spent some time floating in the pleasantly cool water surrounded by sandy beaches. We even had a brief rain shower early that evening, the first rain we had seen in several weeks, which helped cool the weather down a bit. We also spent Thursday and Friday in Smith Bay, mostly just hanging out and relaxing. The overnight temperatures actually got down to the upper 50's and we had nice sunshine and a cool breeze in the daytime - very nice and long overdue!

We left Smith Bay on Saturday, September 1st, about 8:30 a.m. and arrived at Kentucky Lake State Park marina around 11:30 to get some ice and spend a little time with Carl and Sally, a couple we met in Demopolis last fall. They have a home in Paducah, KY and brought their boat "Loafer" from Demopolis to Kentucky Lake for the summer. We had a nice visit on their boat and then the Captain and I grabbed a burger at the marina restaurant before continuing south to our anchorage at Fort Heiman. There were several boats in the cove when we arrived late afternoon but most of them soon cleared out, although two other Gibson-style houseboats ended up anchoring in the cove with us overnight. After dark we were able to see a very nice Labor Day fireworks display from the direction of Paris Landing a few miles south of us.

On Sunday we stopped in at Pebble Isle to pump out and get fuel and water and, of course, ice. We arrived at Cuba Landing about 3:00 p.m. that afternoon and anchored in the cove beyond Pier 5. We had planned to put the dinghy down and go over to the dock to see Kevin & Roxie, but when the Captain went to check on the dinghy he found that it had burst yet another seam and was totally flat on one side. Kevin & Roxie stopped by in a friend's dinghy later that evening with a few supplies we had asked them to pick up for us and we invited them over for breakfast the next morning. They apparently had quite a party on their dock Saturday and were taking it easy on Sunday.

Kevin & Roxie came by about 9:30 on Monday and brought ice from the marina. We had a nice breakfast along with a few Bloody Mary's, and I also baked another loaf of banana nut bread to send home with Kevin. We had planned to do a fifty mile day when we left Cuba Landing but decided to split it up into two shorter days, so we left Cuba about 1:00 p.m. Monday and found an anchorage at Kelly's Island about 4:00 p.m. Our friend Kelly from Pickwick called that afternoon to say that he was going to bring his boat down to see us the next evening at Diamond Island.

On our way to Diamond Island Tuesday, we saw something swimming across the water in front of the boat. At first we thought it was a beaver or an otter but as we got closer to it we saw that it was a squirrel and we just about ran over it! Neither of us had ever seen a squirrel swimming across a body of water before. Kelly arrived at Diamond Island about the same time we did, around 2:00 p.m., and we found a great sandy beach to pull up on. We had a fun evening sitting/laying on the bow eating cheese and crackers and seeing who could make the loudest body farts with their back on the teak - guess you had to be there to appreciate it!

After a nice breakfast the next morning, Kelly hollered at a guy who was passing by in his boat so the guy pulled over and started chatting with Kelly. Come to find out, the guy (Jerry Thomas) is friends with Kelly's mom and stepfather who now live in Florida so Kelly called his mom and gave the phone to Jerry so they could say hello. Anyway, over the course of the next few hours Jerry entertained us with all kinds of stories of local interest and also gave us a sampling of his talent as a harmonica player, which was very impressive. He plays locally at square dancing functions, nursing homes and at The Rock Pile, a local bar that sits on the river bank not far from Diamond Island. What a unique and interesting person he turned out to be!

Captain's note: As mentioned before, this adventure Brenda & I are on is not about the destination, it's about the journey. Meeting Jerry was truly one of those "journey moments" that continue to make this trip worthwhile. Listening to him talk about growing up and spending his entire 63 years in this area and all the changes and expereinces he has seen was wonderful! He talked about the history of harvesting freshwater mussells in this area and how they were once used for buttons of clothing; he talked of the flooding river and how when the water was high enough a person could catch all the catfish they wanted up in the bean fields; he talked about planting corn and farming the island that we were sitting on. These and the many other stories he told are what it's all about as we continue to experience this lifestyle we call "living aboard".

Kelly arriving at Diamond Island in his 25-foot Bayliner.

Kelly and Jerry Thomas swapping stories and discussing mutual acquaintances.

Jerry is giving us a sample of his musical abilities with the harmonica.

Kelly left Diamond Island about 3:00 Wednesday afternoon to beat a barge that was headed for the lock and Todd and I took a long walk on the beach around Diamond Island. We left about 9:30 Thursday morning, were through the lock by 11:15 and to Aqua Yacht Harbor by 12:30 p.m. We pumped out and got tied up at the transient dock in front of the motor vessel Marlee Ann. We had seen Blake and Marlee at Grand Harbor before we began our trip up the Cumberland several weeks ago and were surprised to see them on Pickwick again. Come to find out they were having some air conditioner issues and had moved over to Aqua Yacht to get them taken care of.

We spent most of the afternoon making a Wal-Mart run to Corinth and then I did some cooking in preparation of a weekend visit by my brother (Dewayne) and his wife (Pennie) who were driving from Houston, MO to Pickwick on Friday, September 7th, and planned to spend the weekend with us, leaving on Monday.

I finally took a break from my galley chores Thursday evening and went over to spend some time with Blake and Marlee aboard the Marlee Ann. They were headed to Bay Springs Friday morning and then on to Destin with plans to be in Destin around mid-September where they have a slip rented for the winter. They were telling us about some great fresh seafood places around Destin so we are definitely looking forward to anchoring out in Destin Harbor and getting together with them when we reach the Gulf Coast later this year.  We told them to be sure to look up Miss Pip while they were at Bay Springs.

We got up early Friday morning and cleaned the boat from one end to the other, both inside and out. It wasn't as thorough a cleaning job as it could have been (especially on the inside) but it was as clean as the boat has been in a long time. What a chore! We had hoped Dewayne & Pennie would reach Pickwick by around 2:00 p.m. but it ended up being 3:30 before they made it so we had a few hours to relax before they arrived. In the meantime, the Marlee Ann had taken off Friday morning for Bay Springs and was back at the dock a short time later with a generator problem. Come to find out it was just a belt and they were on their way again in no time, but it was Blake's birthday and we had tried to talk them into coming out to the waterfall with us on Friday and going to Bay Springs on Saturday, but they decided they needed to be on their way south.

Once we got Dewayne & Pennie on board, we headed out to the waterfall and got situated in "our spot" after taking them up to the waterfall for a closer look. Unfortunately, a strong wind was blowing into the cove and we had a few anxious moments as the Captain worked to get the boat turned around with the wind pushing us ever closer to the bluff and the rocks surrounding the waterfall! He did a fine job, though, and about ten minutes later Bud (Iceman) came cruising into the cove on his pontoon so we sat on the bow and visited with him for a few hours before dinner. Jason from Aqua Yacht (and formerly a bartender at Freddy T's) also came by in his dinghy and visited for a while but they both left as it started to get dark.

Pennie & Dewayne on the bow of the boat with the waterfall in the background (even though you can't really see it).

The four of us aboard "Life's2Short" chatting with Bud late Friday afternoon.

Saturday morning was fairly quiet but by noon Tena & Keith arrived and Jason also came back out in his dinghy and made an ice run to Grand Harbor that afternoon where Tena & Keith's daughter, Falicia, took very good care of us! The rain moved in late Saturday afternoon and the gang came aboard "Life's2Short" seeking shelter. I made spinach artichoke dip and barbequed meatballs for everyone, along with a pasta salad I had prepared while we were at Aqua Yacht. Our visitors left shortly before dark and Dewayne & Pennie and I stayed up a few hours longer sitting on the bow of the boat talking and enjoying the nice evening while the Captain relaxed and read.

The boys (Keith, Todd and Dewayne) enjoy a little land time on the gravel bar.

Sunday, September 9th, was Pennie's 40th birthday - Happy Birthday, Pennie! Bud & Mary arrived around 11:00 Sunday morning and shared a late breakfast with us. Tena & Keith showed up about noon with their youngest daughter Sidney and unexpectedly brought us some beer (including my favorite - Michelob Ultra - a real treat!), a box of Sugar Daddy's (a love Keith and I share!) and some ice. Kelly also arrived a short time later. Bud & Mary had planned to just stay for a little while, go home and then come back later in the afternoon with smoked pork butt, coleslaw and beans, but the rain was moving in again so they ended up rafting to us and waiting it out on the pontoon. As with Saturday, several people made their way to "Life's2Short" to get out of the rain, even though we didn't know some of them!

After a few hours, the rain finally let up and Bud & Mary left, as did the "strangers" who were hanging out on "Life's2Short" and I fixed Pip's Vidalia onion dip along with the leftover meatballs and spinach artichoke dip for the rest of the group to munch on. Bud & Mary had other plans for the evening so they didn't make it back out to see us that afternoon.

Todd and Keith show off their diving prowess from the back of Kelly's boat.

Kelly came out Monday morning to shuttle Dewayne & Pennie back to Aqua Yacht where they had left their car. We got them on their way around 10:00 or so, grabbed some ice and came back to the waterfall where we had a quiet day, although the Captain did spend some time cleaning the yellow mustache off the bow of the boat. About 6:00 p.m., Kelly wanted to take us for a boat ride and we ended up going over to Bud's house. We had talked to Bud a couple of times that afternoon about coming out to the waterfall but it was storming at his house and he was uncertain about getting out. As always, we were welcomed with open arms and were invited in for smoked pork butt sandwiches and Mary's killer cole slaw. It was dark by the time we left but we made it back to the waterfall without incident.

It started to rain early Tuesday morning and we heard Kelly start up his boat to leave about 5:45 a.m. It was a lazy rainy morning and we lounged in bed until about 10:00 a.m. When the rain finally let up, the Captain went out and spent some time waxing part of the bow while I caught up on our blog notes since our last post on August 27th.

The weather is forecast to be in the 80's for the next several days so it seems that fall is on its way. Jason from Aqua Yacht came by Tuesday evening in a borrowed pontoon boat and we visited for a few hours before retiring to the boat for the evening. Bo & Terri came out late Wednesday morning in her Tahoe and spent a few hours enjoying the beautiful, cloudless day. About an hour after Bo & Terri left, Bud showed up on his Sea Doo and we hung out in the water for a few hours before he headed back home.

Thursday was cool and cloudy. The rain began about 10:00 a.m. and didn't stop all day. Other than a couple of boats making a quick pass through the cove that afternoon, we had no other visitors. It was still raining when we got up Friday morning but had pretty much stopped by 10:00 a.m. when Carl & Sally passed through aboard "Loafer" on their way to Florence and, ultimately, Chattanooga. They pulled up next to us and we shared a cup of coffee and chatted for a bit before they continued on their way.

George & Mary aboard "Love Knot" pulled up to the gravel bar shortly after Carl & Sally left. They had been to the waterfall for a day trip earlier in the week and decided to come back and spend several days there before beginning the journey south to their winter home in Florida.  Ed & Wendy arrived about 1:30 Friday afternoon just as the Captain was making the trek up to the waterfall to pick up some of the massive amount of trash that tends to get deposited there.

By Friday evening we had also been joined by Kelly & Melissa, Bud & Mary and her grandkids, and Tena & Keith. Kelly & Melissa brought food for an army - fried chicken, blackeye peas, baked beans, turnip greens, macaroni & cheese, rolls, etc. - and Ed grilled portabella mushrooms stuffed with Italian sausage. Needless to say, no one went hungry!  Bud & Mary took the kids home before it got too late and Ed & Wendy made their way back to their camp site on a nearby island. Kelly & Melissa tied their boat next to ours with plans to spend the night on it while Tena & Keith ended up spending the night with us on "Life's2Short."

Apparently it got really windy after we went to bed and Kelly & Melissa decided to go home around midnight because the fenders we had put between the boats were making too much noise and they weren't able to sleep. Saturday morning Todd went with Tena & Keith to their house in Corinth and also toured the lake house they are building on Pickwick. Ed & Wendy arrived back at the waterfall about 10:00 a.m. but Tena & Keith and Todd didn't get back until after noon. At any rate, Wendy fixed a big late breakfast of ham, potato & cheese burritos along with both cornmeal and chocolate gravies (southern specialities, we're told) and biscuits.

When Tena & Keith and Todd returned from Corinth, they also brought more Michelob Ultra and Sugar Daddy's for me - thanks, guys! - and all kinds of dips that Tena and Wendy made on Thursday: spinach artichoke dip, shrimp dip, pizza dip, pimiento cheese w/ jalapenos, seven-layer dip, etc. We were definitely set for the weekend! In addition to all the other goodies, Tena brought lots of Bloody Mary mix for her and Todd. Tena & Keith are now affectionately referred to as "Bloody Mary" for Tena due to her propensity to drink Bloody Mary's all day long when she's around Todd and "Sugar Daddy" for Keith based on his and my love for them and his generosity in ensuring that I am well-supplied!

It was another beautiful day and there were a number of boats anchored out in the cove waiting for the Darrell Worley's Tennessee River Run concert that afternoon and evening. Bo & Stephanie arrived early afternoon with their friend Carol and kids (hers and theirs), and Bud & Mary and her grandkids made a brief appearance mid-afternoon on their way to Waterloo. We left with Tena & Keith late afternoon in their 210 Sea Ray to begin making our way toward Pickwick State Park where the concert was begin held.  Ed & Wendy stopped by the camp site and ended up helping Bo & Stephanie get their tents set up before joining us. We were having difficulty getting Keith's anchor to hold so we all rafted to Ed when he got there and proceeded to work on some of the many dishes that Tena and Wendy had prepared for the occasion.

A sampling of some of the boats that came to hear the concert from the water.

Me, Wendy and Tena huddle together to keep warm in the cool night air.

Ed of the locally infamous "Edneck Yacht Club," the name of his pontoon boat.

The concert was well attended, both on shore and in the water with boats anchored and rafted together all around us. There were four featured bands, one of which was Charlie Daniels, with local boy Darrell Worley as the final performer of the evening. We listened to a few songs by the band preceding Charlie Daniels, stayed for all of Charlie Daniels and for Darrell Worley's locally popular "Yellow Creek Waterfall" song.  When Todd went to pull up Keith's anchor, he soon discovered that the anchor was no longer attached to the rope - no wonder we weren't having any luck getting it to hold! The evening had turned quite cool and we had a very chilly, fast ride back to the waterfall where Tena & Keith spent the night with us again.

Sunday was another beautiful day with perfect temperatures and not a cloud in the sky. Ed & Wendy arrived around noon and Bo & Stephanie and gang arrived a short time later. Bud showed up on his Sea Doo around 4:00 and visited with everyone for a while, and then the whole gang packed up and headed out around 6:00. Todd & I sat on the gravel bar and visited with George & Mary ("Love Knot") for a little while before retiring to the boat for a quiet evening.

Sunday's gathering on the gravel bar.

Todd toured "Love Knot" Monday morning and then invited George & Mary for a tour of "Life's2Short." When we got ready to leave, George helped us get everything loaded on the boat and also helped us with the anchor. (Captain's note: It was very emotional for us as we pulled away from the waterfall this time knowing that, if our schedule goes as planned, we will not see our waterfall family of friends for the next two years. If our plans hold true, the next two years will be spent in Florida, the Bahamas, and heading up the Atlantic coast and through Canada to complete the Great Loop. The emotions were also high as we lost our best friend and boating partner two years ago this week just a few short miles from the waterfall... R.I.P. Duane Teale. We miss you so very much.)

We arrived at Grand Harbor around noon where I proceeded to tackle the laundry while the Captain pumped out the holding tanks, filled up the water tank, etc. Bud came by mid-afternoon and visited for a while and then Tena and daughter Sidney stopped by around 5:30 as Todd was washing the exterior of "Life's2Short."

We met Bud at Jon's Pier about 8:00 Monday evening and enjoyed a nice dinner with him, even though we were disappointed that Mary wasn't able to join us. Tuesday morning we did a little local grocery shopping and then Kelly came by on his boat to deliver a few supplies and pick up his table, chairs and other items he had left on the gravel bar Friday evening. We visited for about an hour and then he headed out to the waterfall to see Mo who had come in from Florence Monday afternoon.

We left Grand Harbor shortly after 11:00 a.m. on the 18th and arrived in Bay Springs late Tuesday afternoon where we found a new sandy beach to pull up to. Todd had scouted out this cove on Bud's Sea Doo when we were here in July and wanted to give it a try. It was a beautiful, quiet evening and we had a great view of the cove around us and the main lake off to the east.

Our current anchorage on Bay Springs Lake.

The weather is supposed to be really nice all week and we are looking forward to getting together with Chuck & Pip aboard "Miss Pip" in a few days. They are currently staying at Bay Springs Marina and will hopefully anchor out with us for several days while we are here. Our plan is to spend the next week or so on Bay Springs before beginning the journey back down the Tenn-Tom to Demopolis. Since we have reasonably good Internet access here we will try to post another update before we leave, probably around the middle of next week.