September 27


t's 2:33 AM. I just got in my sleeping bag inside my boat. I'm liking this boat bed idea. I always wanted one of those race car beds as a kid but my parents never got me one. But I have a boat bed now so it's cool. The temperature is dropping. I have paddled about 295 miles in the past 7.5 days. That's an average of 39 miles a day. I am only 5 miles from the extract point. I have put In a couple 17 hour days. Paddling well into the night most nights. Paddle till 2 AM, wake up a few hours later and do it all over again. Parts of my body hurt. My hands hurt from paddling. New calluses have formed. But Butt is killing me from sitting in the boat too long. But physically I feel strong. Mentally I feel determined.

It was an interesting day.  I got a call about the situation in Florida and had to make a decision that I would have to delay my trip back down indefinitely.  It was a gut shot.  Knowing that I have no control over it and just having to accept it.  I didn’t have time to think about it. I had to continue and get off the Ohio.  I had to stop several times to use the bathroom today.  And not the quick bathroom break kind.  This caused a problem because I was blowing through my supply of toilet paper quickly.  I was hoping to find a park or store on the river that had bathrooms that I could get some more TP.  The only park I saw was a few miles away.  I used up the last of my TP, said a quick prayer and made a dash for the park.  Sure enough the park didn’t have a bathroom.  I saw a gas station a little under a mile away and decided that was my best bet.  I started walking.  When I came over the hill I saw a McDonalds a little closer than the gas station and decided that was just as good.  I went into the bathroom and started rolling TP up around my hand.  It wasn’t the highest quality but it did the trick.  I figured that since I was there I might as well get some dinner.  I grabbed a sack of burgers and fries and headed back to the boat.  I shoved off and had a lovely dinner while floating on the water.  While I was finishing my second burger I realized that it probably wasn’t the smartest idea to eat McD’s when I have been having stomach problems.  My mind went into overdrive thinking about the consequences that could come from this decision.    Surprisingly it didn’t turn out as bad as I thought.  I made it to my final lock of the trip.  And of course it was dark out again.  The guy was concerned for me and said he was going to hold me in the chamber till the approaching boat was in the other chamber.  He was concerned for my safety.  Considering since I have been through every lock but the first one in Pittsburg on the entire Ohio River this summer, I figured I would be OK but decided not to argue.