Aug 9

Did nineteen miles today, and into a strong wind. Maybe I'm getting broken in. Left that little inlet behind Point Pleasant about eight. The McDonald's right down the street was calling me but I had a feeling that I would find a good restaurant in Gallipolis. It was only five miles and I pulled in there about ten-thirty. There was a car show going on in the city park right on the riverfront. Country music, lots of old cars, I mean LOTS of old cars, can't figure out where they all came from. Of course, Chevies from the fifties are pretty common, but how often do you see a Nash Ambassador or a Studebaker. And a 1929 Mercedes roadster that I wanted to put in my boat and bring home.

I found a very good breakfast joint right there on the square,Sweet Blessings, an old fashioned diner with stools and boothes. Good coffee, eggs and bacon, toast, just like home. Nothing comes in a box, coffee comes in a mug, real metal flatware. Just what I needed. Afterward I wandered the park, taking in the vintage autos, but soon enough, back on the river.

Went through the Robert Byrd lock about three-thirty. They put me in the big chamber this time, work was being done on the small one. Unreal feeling, the chamber is six hundred feet long, fifty feet wide, my little kayak is 16 by two. But they put me right through.

Wasn't sure where I would stay tonight but about seven I came across a boat ramp, one of many built by some Ohio government agency. They are public, usually out in rural areas, not crowded and well-maintained. When I pulled up there was a young couple playing catch and swim with two lively puppies. We struck up a conversation, he is a student at Marshall College in Huntington and they live near here, a very isolated area. I enjoyed them a lot - they wanted to know if there was anything they could do for me but I told them I had everything I needed. I did mention though, that the one thing I can't get enough of is a cold soda. They introduced themselves as Jeremiah and Sarah Matson, and about twenty minutes after they left, Jeremiah came back with an ice cold root beer. These are the sort of people that I won't forget.