Seems we had some repetitive responses to our journey on our trip. Some people kept saying: You are crazy. One lockmaster said: Are you serious? when Karen called ahead so they would be ready for us, telling him we were two women in a red canoe. It was raining and gray and he truly couldn’t believe we were asking to be locked through.
Maybe we were crazy to be out on the river in such weather, with above average river levels. But we felt safe and protected…all the more by the kind people we met along the way.
Special thanks to some anonymous people who didn’t know we were using their campgrounds but we felt sure they would have welcomed us if they did know.
Special thanks to the folks at the Ohio Valley Boat Club for letting us eat lunch in their building…and use their facilities!
Special thanks to The Boathouse (http://www.boathouseohio.com) staff for their welcome and good food…and the use of the clubhouse next door complete with warm showers! If you are ever in Toronto, Ohio, stop by and have a meal!
Special thanks to Father Dan and Custodian Joe (aka the fisherman) of St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in Bellaire, Ohio, (http://www.bncatholic.org) for the use of their cafeteria floor (hard, but dry and safe) and their kitchen and the candybars that Joe sent us on with. It is not easy to knock on the doors of a rectory at 9 pm on a rainy night with no place to stay but we did it and were rewarded with hospitality and grace.
We have learned much about hospitality along our journey…and the need to ask for help and graciously accept it without expectation of remuneration. Sometimes it is more blessed to receive than to give…especially when it is dark and rainy and you don’t know where you will sleep for the night!
We noted that usually we were given these words as we went on our way: Be safe. Be careful. We pondered what it meant to be safe. We understood it to be a blessing of sort and we appreciated that. But do we always want to be safe? Do we think we have to be careful? What would it sound like for people to bid farewell with these words: Take a calculated risk! Take a chance! Have an adventure! Hum.