February 23rd, 2004 - CrawDads Completes Great Loop Cruise!
Dear Friends and Family,
It hardly seems possible that 10 months and 10 days
have passed since we began this trip last April... so much has happened since we
set sail from our home port of Amelia Island some 6000 miles ago.
The trip was even more wonderful than we expected in
so many ways. This experience has taught us so many things... and
not just all things nautical.
We learned things about our country, witnessed the
incredible beauty of the nature around us, and were often reminded of how
lucky we were to enjoy it from such a unique perspective at "sea
We learned quickly to listen to the wisdom of other
boaters that went before us (so to speak), took tips from fellow sailors and
weather gurus who taught us to read the signs of the wind and water.
We learned how to live in close quarters ... and
how not to!
We learned how to communicate in nautical terms,
including starboard, port, knots, etc. and how to converse by radio with
the tugboat captains, dockmasters, and lock tenders. And
before too long, Captain and First Mate could practically dock the boat
without the need for words at all...
We learned many things, not the least of which is
that we learned a lot about ourselves.
Perhaps the most memorable of all will be the many
people we have enjoyed seeing during the course of this trip. Whether just
another passing boat, an old friend who came out to meet us in port, or a new
lifelong friendship that was forged... each and every one of them has had an
impact on our experience.
To the 108 guests who joined us for Loop Stop
parties in FL, NJ, IN, IL, PA, & MI... thanks for making our parties so
For the 19 "Official Crew Members"
who cruised with us ... we are very grateful for your help in navigating
some difficult waters, bridges and some very ominous looking locks!
To the 25 or more friends who met us at their
home ports as we cruised through...thanks for making us feel so welcome in
your home towns!
For all the fellow boaters we met along the
Loop, and especially to newfound friends...we look forward to seeing you
To all of you who have followed us on this
website...thank you for your emails, prayers and general wishes of
goodwill... we have really appreciated it!
Our trip is now over... but the memories will last
forever. We hope you have enjoyed following along with us.
Tom & Chris Crawford
shall not cease from exploration
the end of all our exploring
be to arrive where we started
know the place for the first time.
Gidding" from Four Quarters