Day 7 – Laundry Day
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
Crowley’s Yatch Yard, Calumet, Illinois
Mike probably had the most interesting day on Wednesday, so here’s Mike’s journal entry:
“Last night Hugh made the decision to stay put, tied on a wall at Crowley’s. The weather report is for winds of up to 40 miles an hour off the lake. With a 90% chance of rain, there was nothing but trouble if we left. It did rain hard most of the day. Hugh wanted to check all the lines for areas that could chafe. I decided he had more than enough help, so I volunteered to help Julie with the laundry. The lady running the laundry is Geraldine. I got to talking with her. She was very helpful and we soon got to liking one another. A guy came in the laundromat selling socks; he sold me three pairs for $4.00 I bought them and Geraldine became very angry with him. He was ripping me off. He started to give her some back talk I just told her to let it go. She chased him out. Guess he’s the one that lost out, because she wouldn’t let him stand by the door to get out of the rain. We had lunch and Rex left. He s a very likable person. We were all grateful to him for driving us all around for provisions and laundry.
We have the whole day pretty much to ourselves. Nice, very cozy here in my bunk listening to Fleetwood Mac. Got a hard cover book for a buck at the dollar Store–Jessica DuLong, Rediscovering America on the Hudson My Rover Chronicles, Free Press.
Being here tied up in South Chicago is such a strange mixture of sounds. The water slapping against the hull twice–once on the port side and then again when it bounces back from the steel sheeting of the sea wall. There is a train bridge five hundred feet from us. Day and night sirens blare, mostly rescue vehicles and police cars.
South Side Chicago is not an area I’m supposed to be comfortable. I remember the feeling of “being different” when I walked into the dollar store with Geraldine. Not a white person in sight; probably hadn’t been one either. The lady at the check out counter looked at us strangely, I just smiled at her and looked toward Geraldine and similed and said, “I’m with her!”
Late afternoon, I sat next to Julie to look at some pics and share a laugh. Then I went to the other side of the cabin site. Bill was using the hand pump to empty the bilge that the dishwater empties. A little while later Julie asked, “Do you smell the head?” I said, Yes, and she checked. The toilet bowl was a dark brown all the way up to the rim. She called out that we had a problem. We pumped the forward tank. Later she confided that she first notiiced the smell when I was sitting next to her. She thought, Man, Mike really needs a shower, better not sit next to him again. At 19:44 I heard the first radio traffic of the day. Something is out bound, I didn’t catch the name.”