Of murals and boaters and butter tarts

Fred Lenz was the dude who decorated the Archer Daniels Midland grain elevator with the pleasing mural—included in our last post—depicting one of those times a Jesuit missionary advanced the threat of fire and brimstone as motivation for the natives to donate beaver pelts and colourful blankets to help the Church fund construction of a huge ornate basilica in Montreal.  Actually Lenz died halfway through and left his sons to fill in the blanks, but before he did he finished a bunch of other ones around town.  They’re kind of famous now.  Here are just a few.

Most of the murals document scenes from Midland’s history.  Here’s one of a lady with a cat sewing in a window above the shoppe where Dana purchased chocolate-covered butter tarts.

Speaking of butter tarts, Midland hosts an annual Butter Tart Festival that draws folks from around the country.  They sold some 200,000 of ’em this year.  Plus contests and games and music and whatnot.  We’re sad we missed it.  Dana does love a good butter tart.

We also love pizza.  Dillon’s has great food, and the owner chatted with us at length about boating and restaurants and post-industrial revolution theories of management.   Know where we wouldn’t get pizza?  That’s right, at a repurposed and unattended Redbox kiosk.  Bizarre.  If it can crank out a hot pizza in three minutes, we give it about a week before it catches fire.

In the same “bizarre business concept” vein, Midland has the first catnip dispensary we’ve encountered.  It’s not a front for pot either.  It’s just cat stuff, including curated “catnip from around the world.”  Fred Lenz almost certainly didn’t paint the psychedelic cat mural.

Anyway, the marina is about two kilometers from downtown, which meant multiple strolls and scooter rides along the peaceful green path between the two.

Friday evening we headed over to the Boathouse for some live music.  Karla Crawford has a great voice.

The highlight, however, was when Karla introduced the two guys in her band as being from Huntsville.  Someone in the crowd trying to be funny yelled “Alabama?”  Karla immediately said “No, Huntsville, Ontario.  They have all their teeth.”  Everyone laughed.  Doug rushed to the tip jar with money.  Even in Canada, they know what’s up.*

Midland overall?  Awesome town.  We looked up houses for sale along the waterfront.

Wisdom demands not traveling in crowded areas on summer weekends, because every ding-dong with more boat than brains is out bashing around.  But we needed to get to Port Severn yesterday, so we left Bay Port behind anyway.

Approaching the treacherous Potato Channel, about a dozen boats of various shapes and sizes zoomed past at unsafe speeds and distances, but we made it.  Approaching the treacherous Highway 400 bridge, the current from the dam pushed us around but mercifully the lock on the other side regulated traffic so as to give us an opening and we made it.

Our first TSW lock of the year technically is Lock 45, but we’re going the wrong way so for us it’s Lock 1.

Somewhat predictably, after the lockmaster announced that he’d be taking only Tumbleweed and a SeaDoo through, Mr. and Mrs. Ding-Dong ignored him and jammed their toy boat in, riding our fenders along the way.  Grrrrr.  Deep breaths though.  We’ve got a lot of this ahead.

After significant docking funny business that culminated with the dockhands-in-training disconnecting Lesley’s Idea from shore power and moving her down the dock—all without notifying the startled occupants—we finally tied up.  Escape from the ordinary indeed.

Port Severn is tiny, but of course it has an LCBO.  There’s also the “Wonderful Flying Time Machine,” which is nearly as ridiculous as a pizza kiosk.  Yes, Port Severn has one of those too.

Whatever.  The goal was to reach Port Severn before Brad and Kate arrive, and we did.  They get here this evening.  Tomorrow, Big Chute and beyond.


*Although college football is still five weeks away, hating Alabama is never out of season.  And Florida.  And Georgia.  And Kentucky, South Carolina, Texas A&M, Oklahoma, Notre Dame, Ohio State, and Michigan.  Oh, and Clemson and USC.  Plus a few others.

Georgian Bay, top to bottom

Rain in Honey Harbour (which is Canadian for “Honey Harbor”) today means knocking out a catch-up post.  And watching the British Open.  Wooo!  That’s right, we’ve masterfully reached the perfect location to stage for the first Trent-Severn lock on Sunday and for scooping up Brad and Kate on Monday.  Wooo!  Wooo!

Chattanooga’s own Roger Alan Wade wisely noted that “[i]f you’re gonna be dumb, you gotta be tough.”  We’re definitely not tough, and it seems like only last post we were mocking sailors for foolishly venturing out in fog.  In fact, this dude being towed across our path may or may not have lost his way.

But those sailors didn’t need to get to Britt.  We did.  So last Sunday we took off from Killarney.  In the fog.

We did make the judicious decision to go straight across open water rather than attempt the Collins inlet, however, which means we missed miles of scenic beauty that would’ve been obscured by fog anyway and missed hitting a rock that would’ve derailed the entire summer plan.  Fortunately the sun was out as we approached the Byng Inlet lighthouse, which allowed us to avoid running over a quite handsome loon who wandered a bit far from shore.

We rather assumed Byng Inlet was named for Marie Moreton, aka Lady Byng of Vimy, who in turn was named after the trophy given each year to the most gentlemanly NHL player.  Or maybe the trophy was named for her.  Either way we were incorrect.  But the scenery is awesome.

In actuality, Byng Inlet was named for British Admiral John Byng, who in 1757 was executed by firing squad for cowardice.  Probably refused to go out in fog or something.  It’s unclear what relationship Ol’ Chickenshit had with these parts, but the locals don’t seem to care.

The area once was home to both lumber mills and natives.  With respect to the former, the mills are closed and the ghost town of Byng Inlet now is abandoned.  With respect to the latter, the local Magnetawan First Nation has exactly 99 members.*

The “town” across the inlet from the lumber mill ruins is Britt.  Britt is famous as the place we first met Rick and Mary and Maddie Sue and Exhale.  Which now is Tumbleweed.  We distinctly recall trudging with Second Wave, Exhale, Sea Jamm, and Gypsy up to the only nearby restaurant.  Which now is closed.  According to the crusty guy in the store below what used to be that restaurant, there’s a reason it hasn’t opened since the Covid pandemic: “Kids these days don’t want to work, because their Boomer parents just give them everything.”  Regardless of the reason, we ate our meals on the boat.**

Then off to Parry Sound, winding through the island cottages.  Their fresh water source is readily apparent, but we have questions about sewage and electricity, which inexplicably is called “hydro” up here even though only 59.3% of the country’s production actually involves water-driven turbines.  They’re damn scenic, however, and presumably relatively crime-free.

Parry Sound’s favorite son is Bobby Orr, one of hockey’s all-time greats.  In his illustrious sixteen-year professional career Orr won a bunch of awards, but none of them were the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy so he’s kind of worthless from the perspective of relevance to this post.

Cool little town, dominated by the CPR trestle bridge.

The bridge was completed in 1908, and at 517 meters supposedly is one of the longest railroad bridges in Canada.  All we personally can confirm is that the Trestle Brewing Company has most excellent pretzels and salads but slow service.  Also, we’ll be skipping the Poutine Feast.  Not fans.

Ever since moving aboard Misty Pearl in 2018, we’ve been keeping an eye out for boats with Pearl in the name.  Pearl Mist is the biggest one yet.  We stressed about the narrow approach to Parry Sound and yet somehow she was able to shoehorn in.  But as we’ve admitted multiple times, we’re weenies.

Once again, Dana timed the bridge perfectly on our departure.  Which is a good thing, because this sucker only opens once every two hours.

The exit from Parry Sound took us by Isabella Island, which gave its name to the Isabella Island Great Loop Dinghy Association.  As far as we know, Mini Pearl remains the only vessel to earn the celebratory but non-existent burgee.

The south path to Honey Harbour is much sketchier than what we and Pearl Mist faced coming from the north.  It’s particularly sketchy when sailboaters ignore their radio and charge straight into the narrowest spot.  The dude at the wheel grinned like a clueless idiot when we passed about five feet apart.  Probably American.  Dana ignored him.  Doug glared.

Yup, we’ve started seeing boats again.  And yup, sailboaters—even nice polite sailboaters like these who scooched over at the first opportunity to let us pass—do nothing but gum up the works.

More awesome islands and cottages.

Of course, there’s always that one cottage that ruins the neighborhood.

Canadian beaches never stop surprising us.

Then past Honey Harbour and into South Bay, tucked away at the back of a passage so scenic and interesting that we forgot to take a single picture.

Most of the time when we show up someplace on a Monday, the restaurants are closed on Mondays.  If we arrive on a Tuesday, however, the restaurants are closed on Tuesday.  On Wednesday, we pulled in to South Bay Cove, ready to enjoy the highly-rated Maple Canadian Pub.  Closed on Wednesdays.  WTF?  So we scootered through the annoying woodland flies four miles to Honey Harbour and the next closest place to eat.

Because we had no other option, after a very slow but delicious dinner we scootered back and started season two of The Bear.  Tomorrow off to Midland.

Except wait!  Hot news!  Moments before pressing the “publish” button, we changed our minds.  Tomorrow now looks to be a horrible day to travel, even though Midland is only ten miles away.  The nice folks at South Bay said we could stay until Saturday, so as to not die on Friday.  So that was the new plan.

The new plan, however, became the old new plan when we decided to just go today and stay in Midland for three days.  All of the weather apps said the bad stuff today wouldn’t hit until 5.  There’s sort of almost blue sky.  Quick, toss off the lines and let’s get out of here quickly.  Back through Honey Harbour, this time with a photo to prove it.

Out through the narrow channel as fast as possible at 9 km/h.

As we reached the only open stretch of water, Dana look at the weather predictions.  No rain for the next five hours.  Light wind.  No worries.  Literally two minutes later we saw a fast approaching cloud that looked remarkably like it was dumping water.  Dana looked at the weather predictions.  Hmmm.

Given the exchange rate, 100 km/h is only 62 mph American, but still.  And “Hail up to toonie size” is hilarious yet terrifying at the same time.  In any language, “Risk of a tornado” isn’t a good thing.  Fortunately the rain that hit us wasn’t too bad, the hail was smaller than toonie size, and there wasn’t a tornado.

Even more fortunately, it all was gone by the time we rounded the corner and put Bay Port Yachting Centre (which is Canadian for “Bay Port Yachting Center”) in our sights.

Two things of note along the waterfront as we approached the marina.  First, there’s Pearl Mist again.

Per the company website, she’s “exquisitely appointed” and “offers the excitement and romance of the sea in an intimate and personalized setting.”  Really?  Romance of the “sea?”  Clearly Pearl Mist and Ocean Navigator use the same shameless marketing fraudster.

Second, there’s the largest mural we’ve seen, and we’ve seen a bunch of them.***

Hopefully we’ll find more to report on Midland, since we’re here until Sunday.


*Apparently the whole “manifest destiny” gambit was too clever for Canada.  Instead of rounding up the indigenous peoples and herding them into godless hellholes like Oklahoma and North Dakota, Canada and her natives reached relatively civilized agreements, thereby depriving generations of Canadian boys the formative experience of politically incorrect “Cowboys and Indians” cosplay.

**In fairness to the supposedly lazy kids of Britt, there is in fact one place along the lane with food.  But we weren’t in the mood for “creative sundaes,”  and “Rock Bottom” by definition sounds like it couldn’t get any worse.

***Based on the mural it seems quite possible that Canadian boys grew up playing “Preachers and Indians,” which would explain a lot.

Good or bad, the days of solitude are behind us

Little Detroit Channel is the only charted worry between Spanish and Killarney.  Despite the name, the concern isn’t street gangs, or Red Wing fans, or Eminem; it’s the narrow trench between hull-piercing submerged rocks.  Meh.  We barely had to slow down.

Okay, there’s one more worry.  The Little Current bridge only swings open once an hour.  For three minutes.  Miss it and you have to tread water for a good long time.  In current.  Which sucks.  Dana calculated our departure perfectly, however, so three and a half hours after leaving Spanish we rolled through Little Current and the bridge and past the lighthouse like we owned them.

On the open water stretch the wind built and the low cloud looked sketchy, but no problems arose.

Speaking of lighthouses, we’ve seen hundreds of ’em.  This is the first time we’ve caught a mother with her baby.

This little one marks a place we dinghied around with Second Wave on Mini Pearl one 2018 evening as the sun was setting.  Great memories of great times.

Then into the Killarney Channel, which thankfully was only moderately crowded.

Killarney is an awesome little spot.  Founded in 1820 as a fur trading outpost, supposedly it’s the oldest town in the North Channel/Georgian Bay.  To celebrate the first road access in 1962, they burned and scuttled the ship that no longer was required for mail service.  True story.

Killarney Mountain Lodge is new to us, and huge, and swanky.  Good steakhouse.  We didn’t bother with the pool, in part because the high was 66°*.

The uncharacteristic fog that set in this morning was acceptable only because we didn’t plan to travel.  Sailboats still were out and about, of course, because sailors don’t care.

When the sun finally appeared, happy holidayers came out to play.

These things looked fun, but the chances Dana would pedal around while Doug reclined on the cushion with a drink in his hand approached zero, so neither of us brought it up.

Anyway, sitting in Killarney thinking about traveling with Second Wave through these parts almost exactly five years ago made us wistful, damn near to the point of teary eyes.  We miss a lot about them, including those days of just mindlessly following along behind Brent through the Georgian Bay islands, confident in the knowledge that Karen was worrying enough for all four of us.  Great memories of great times indeed.   Brent and Karen are the rare strange breed who sold their power boat and bought another lake sailboat, although right about now we figure they’d rather be in Killarney than in San Antonio.  Did we mention it’s 66°?

There are several Looper boats in Killarney, including Prime Meridian.  Rich and Maggie visited Misty Pearl during the Fall Rendezvous boat crawl, and we met up with them again at Faro Blanco.  Seeing them in Ontario was cool.

Remember all those empty places we stopped?  No more.  From here, we’re heading into the teeth of the Looper peloton like drunks going the wrong way on an interstate.  Should be interesting.


*Thats 66° American, not 66° Canadian.

We heart Canada, every year

Woooo!  After substantial loitering and backtracking around Michigan, we’ve now run most of the north coast of the North Channel of Lake Huron, with new stops along the way.  Meldrum Bay in 2018 was fine and all, but not twice.  Oh hell no.  To start it off, Sunday morning we headed for Richards Landing.

Of course, before veering off the St. Lawrence Seaway we had to traverse the stretch that is substantially more narrow than, say, the part that runs through the middle of Lake Superior.  This time, we met a couple of lakers.  First up, Philip R. Clarke, headed to Duluth.  The only thing we know that comes from Duluth is Duluth Trading Company underwear, so logically we figured she was going to pick up a load.

Our AIS predicted that we’d meet Osogovo at the worst spot possible, right on a sharp corner.  We tried hailing her but received no response.  Fortunately we were able to swing just wide enough to scoot by.  The impressionist reflection was a bonus.

Shortly before noon we crossed the border.  Back to the land of those beautiful Maple Leaf flags, polite locals, no litter, ubiquitous provincial liquor stores, and disgusting gravy on French fries.  Eh?

Enough of long days on open water.  Now we’re getting to the good stuff.  Like quintessential Canadian lighthouses in quintessential settings.

Then on in to Richards Landing, where we bumped the Down East burgee and hoisted the courtesy flag and felt all warm and fuzzy.

Google Maps isn’t the only way to know when you’ve reached Canada, by the way.  Another sure-fire tell is that out of deference to their British overlords, they intentionally misspell words like “Center.”

Anyway, we asked the nice locals at the only open restaurant if there were any significant things to see or do while in Richards Landing.  Nobody could come up with anything.*  Incidentally, we agree with anyone who feels like there should be an apostrophe in there somewhere.  There isn’t.  Richards Landing was a good one-night stop though, although not much to do after stopping except get up and leave.

Tuesday morning before untying we spotted an eagle that appeared to be hunting baby ducks.  We think she returned to her huge nest in the pine tree empty-taloned, but it was hard to tell from our camera angle.

We’ve seen scores of range lights on our travels, and mostly think of them as relics from the days when mariners relied on paper charts and needed citrus to avoid scurvy and feared sea monsters at the edge of the earth.  This time we actually used them, however, and thus were able to make our way through the narrow, unmarked, and reportedly dangerous channel under the Bernt Gilbertson Bridge.

It’s quite likely that we’ll be uploading an excessive number of quite similar photos of Georgian Bay shoreline over the next couple of posts, but that’s because we can’t get enough of it.

And cottages.  We also may post a few too many photos of cottages. In Michigan they’re camps, in Canada they’re cottages.  Cottagers up here will build on even the smallest scrap of land.  It’s a literal cottage industry, although we still haven’t found where they make the cheese.

Thessalon Marina lines up nicely with a set of range lights that we didn’t need, but here’s the rear light overlooking a pleasing derelict flower planter.

And then here’s the front light, basically on top of us after we docked.

Much like Richards Landing, Thessalon served up wonderful marina staff and some good walking around, but not much else.

That said, the town welcome sign is a top-five for us.  And we’ve seen a bunch of ’em.

Last year the town’s Horticultural Society celebrated its centennial.  As one might expect, the society has become very accomplished at horticulturing.  Awesome flowers everywhere.

A few other things about Thessalon.  They’re understandably proud of The Red Bridge, which crosses the Thessalon River and was built by one “Mr. Hepburn” in 1888 at a cost of $945.00.**  Still in use today.  We found it odd though, that in nearly 150 years nobody noticed that the bridge is pink, not red.  But we let it go.

Curling is another thing we find odd.  To people from Tennessee and Texas, using a whisk to guide stones on frozen water is about as incomprehensible as eating at Tim Hortons.  Basically curling is slippery shuffleboard without octogenarians.  But apparently they like curling up here, which sort of makes sense.  If the ground is covered with ice 80% of the year you might as well find more things to do on it.

Arguably the only thing that rivals curling for the title of “Weirdest Olympic Sport” is the biathlon.  Biathletes must excel in skiing.  Which is fine.  There are lots of plausible Olympic skiing events.  But they also have to shoot.  They ski, and then shoot.  That’s just plain dopey, we say.  Shilo Rousseau and the villagers of Thessalon, of course, likely disagree.

Down at the marina we met John and Felicia, who are traveling aboard Wine Down and heading to St. Augustine.  We’ll probably see them again since we’re going the same direction.  When they left ahead of us we waved and took pictures of their boat to send them but resisted the urge to say bye to Felicia.  Pretty sure she’s heard that one a few times.

Wednesday took us to Blind River.  On the way Doug started to Google “Blind River restaurants,” but before he could finish, search results for “Blind River rest stop murders” popped up.  Back in 1991 elderly couple Gord and Jackie McAllister were sleeping in their RV—by definition minding their own business—when somebody claiming to be a policeman burst in, robbed them, shot them, and then for good measure shot another dude who happened to stop by.  It’s never officially been solved, but the marina has security cameras so we figured at least they might catch the dude if he killed us.

No need for range lights into Blind River.  Nope.  Just head towards the enormous penis and then bear slightly to starboard.

Upon investigation, it turns out that’s not an enormous penis at all.  It’s an abandoned “burner” that the J.J. McFadden Lumber Company used to do away with wood chips and scraps back when the white pine mill was the world’s largest.  Or maybe just the largest east of the Rockies.  Depends on who you ask.  Regardless, lumber milling was a huge deal along the North Channel, until The Great Mississagi Fire of 1948 burned up most of the necessary raw materials.  The mighty salvage effort following “Red Hell on the Mississagi” is detailed in the Timber Village Museum we visited.

Cool little joint.***  Lots of info about the fire, including a vintage video in which the narrator waxed poetic about the vast virgin forests ripe for plunder until “the long black arm of human carelessness reached into this timberland and set it ablaze.” That’s so colorful we wrote it down.

Here’s downtown.  Not very touristy, is Blind River, but cute enough.

On our walk around we passed a street with two houses sandwiched between two churches.  It occurred to us that if the homeowners attend one of those churches life is easy, but if sectarian animosity ever flares into open crossfire they’re screwed.

Here’s the thing though.  The houses in Blind River are neat and tidy and have happy flowers everywhere.  The marina is fantastic.  The folks are friendly.  Dana got to hold a tiny dog named Paco.  If they had more restaurants and fewer rest stop murders, we’d think about coming back.

Next up, Spanish.  The town, not the language.  Along the way, the scenery just got better and better.

Some guy posted a great photo on the Great Lakes Cruisers Club site: a huge bear walking across a beaver lodge on Jackson Island just three short days ago.  Hey, we’re going to be passing Jackson Island!  Let’s weave our way to the beaver lodge, drop the anchor, and get our own awesome bear photos.

Nope.  We waited.  We ate lunch.  We flew the drone.  Here’s the beaver dam.  No bear.

Oozing with disappointment after bearly missing out for a second time this summer, we cruised on to Spanish.  Hmmmm.  Spanish is to Blind River as Blind River is to Las Vegas.  Here’s downtown Spanish.

On our walk to “town,” we passed the ruins of what once was—according to former students/inmates—a place of systematic abuse and neglect at the hands of the Daughters of the Heart of Mary.  We assume the stories about evil nuns running the Spanish Indian Residential School for Girls are true, because (1) the place looks spooky and (2) we’ve seen the first season of 1923.

Anyway, we hiked up the stairs behind the marina and out the cliff-top trail to get a good photo.   After showers and dinner we’ll load up a couple of episodes of Miss Scarlet and the Duke.  Tomorrow off to Killarney.


*The brochure at the marina claimed the “Twin Trees” are the iconic area attraction, and indeed we’ve never seen two trees that share a branch.  The folks at the restaurant said the trees are dying and have had their heads lopped off and are stupid and not to bother.  It would’ve been a sixteen-mile round trip, so we didn’t.

**Those were Canadian dollars, however, which probably had someone like Richard the Lionheart on them and were worth far less than real dollars.

***Despite saving a toonie, we were moderately annoyed that the museum’s “senior discount” applied to anyone over 50.  We’re not certain about the age exchange rate though, so maybe it’s not really that offensive.

So long Michigan, it’s been nice to know yoop*

This is the part of the blog where we deplete our arsenal of euphemisms for the overused “been there done that” cliché, because new places to stop along the route out of Lake Superior haven’t popped up in the last two weeks.

First up, the trip back to Marquette.  When we left Houghton-Hancock at 6:45, the predicted fog was hanging low enough to cover Mont Ripley but not so low that it impacted us.   Load up some Merle and let’s go.**  Very nice.

Not only did we encounter no fog, for all nine hours the water was so smooth that we didn’t waste the energy it would take to bend down and flip a switch to activate the stabilizers.  Extra very nice.

As we neared Marquette we snapped a shot of the Superior Dome just to prove that we’re not idiots for thinking on our first approach that it was a huge sand pile.  No?  Then try squinting like you’re looking through a filter of that sweet Canadian smoke.  Looks like a huge sand pile now, doesn’t it?

We’ve already done Marquette so there’s no use flogging that dead horse.  This time through, however, we managed to find a statue of the Old Man himself:  Father Jacques “Don’t call me James” Marquette, without whom this city probably would’ve been called something else.

We also ate for the third time at Lagniappe Cajun Creole Eatery, because it’s one of the best restaurants we’ve found.  In our lives.  Ever.  Shrimp and Grits for Dana, Shrimp Creole for Doug.  Yum.  A few errands, boat chores, a drone flight, and a good night’s sleep later, we headed back to Grand Marais.

Thanks to Dana’s unrivaled planning ability, another gorgeous trip.   Confederate Railroad and Don Williams provided the sound track.  Upon departure we were able to naked-eye the sun—such that we needed neither our compass nor our sextant to confirm that we were heading in the right direction—although the odd square shape did give us pause.

Because of, you know, the whole crappy commercial wall thing, we gave Munising a skip and went straight to Grand Marais.  The only thing of interest along the way was being passed by our old pal, the still oddly-named Hon. James L. Oberstar, five miles off to port and on her way to Dearborn.

We’ve already driven Grand Marais into the ground, so not much to add.  Topping off fuel and getting a pump-out hardly seem noteworthy.  A dude did stop by with a couple of Seaplane Splash-In shirts since the booth wasn’t open yet when we left last time, so there was that.  Oh, and there was a unicorn in West Bay, which we know is a reach but at least it’s something.

This morning—very early—a malfunction in some something or other just outside our cabin started an infernal beeping that prevented sleep, so at 4:30 we decided to just get up and start the eleven hours to Sault Ste. Marie in the dark.  The good news is that the moon was shining a bit, and up here the sky starts to lighten seemingly right after sundown—which we know from experience sucks at night almost as much as a beeping noise—so we didn’t hit anything.

Shortly before rounding Whitefish Point, we subjectively confirmed that—like so many other things—even through a telephoto lens from a mile away the Crisp Point Light appears much crisper when observed without an opaque screen of smoke and fog.  This joint doesn’t get many visitors, probably because it sits at the end of a twenty-mile-long gravel road.  

When we passed by here in the other direction a few weeks ago, we completely missed the small stretch of rural Alabama shoreline.  Who knew?

Rather than tangle with the commercial American Soo lock, we opted for our first Canadian lock of the year, which sounds like a betting tip but isn’t.   By the time we get to Rouses Point we’ll have done another seventy or so, although in Quebec they’re not locks, they’re écluses.

Speaking of the sun, there was nothing new under it in Sault Ste. Marie.  Except for the streets blocked off for Gus Macker’s Three-On-Three Basketball Tournament.  That was new.

From here, we’re zipping (at 7.5 knots) along the North Channel (the one on Lake Huron, not the one in Europe), down the Georgian Bay, to Port Severn.  Where we have a date.  With Brad and Kate.  And if we’re late, they’ll have to wait.***


*Okay, we apologize.  That’s embarrassingly horrible.

**“There’s nothin’ harder on your heart than old Haggard and Jones.  They oughta put warning labels on those sad country songs.” – Doug Stone

***We also apologize for doggerel that’s even more embarrassingly horrible than the titular pun.