“We’re Not Yankees We’re Mid-Westerner’s”

This has become Rich’s new smart a$$ phrase to say for every person who says “so you two are Yankees huh?” We are not sure what people mean by this, but it comes up a lot and responding in this fashion seems to confuse them, which is funny to watch. So far, every stereo type about the south has been incorrect:  people with southern accents are smart,  the temperature is tolerable and the mosquitoes are weak-sauce compared to those of the north woods. On that note, the bugs down here most certainly are bigger than those of up north, but they are easier to deal with because you can see and hear them coming from a mile a way, which is something that I personally have come to appreciate. The Swarms are like little airplanes attacking; I just go into King Kong mode and slap them little buggers out of the sky, sure beats inhaling those clouds of them in Wisconsin. My point…I will take the bugs of the south any day of the week over the bugs up north!

As for news about the river conditions, so far it seems that we have arrived in the south a couple of weeks too late, we are working with a two – three mile current most days except on the outside curve of narrow bends where the speed reaches eight miles an hour. It was quite funny last night because we camped near one of these stretches and the bigger tow boats had to gun their engines to even match the speed of the river, it took one tug almost an hour to make it 1/4 of a mile around one of these curves.

Our diet has also changed, we have made the switch from eating gourmet cooking to bare bones peanut butter and jelly for breakfast lunch and dinner. Moral is still high and we are both starting to have mixed feelings about nearing the end of our trip. We are in Vicksburg at the moment and should be in New Orleans in just over a week.



7 Responses to ““We’re Not Yankees We’re Mid-Westerner’s””

  1. Verne Middleton Says:

    Anyone born and bred above the Mason-Dixon Line (which includes, Illinois, Minnesota, and Wisconsin, is a “Yankee.” Just be grateful you aren’t called a “damn Yankee.” BTW, a Yankee is a northern visitor who comes here to visit and returns North. A “damn Yankee” is one who stays.

    • huckleberryfinn09 Says:

      Thanks for the tip Verne, guess that makes us “Damn Yankee’s” has my old man filled you in on our plans? If not you might want to ask him you might get a kick out of it.

  2. The river of this discussion is much more depressing and dangerous than the Mississippi. The roots of it meander as the terrain allows, and not always in the way and places that we desire. Both unfortunately and fortunately we can pick up traits from our parents and social settings – that includes what we hear and the ability to stereotype in a mechanical rather than meaningful way. The trick is to break away from it, and real progress has been made (I can teach my kids not to wear their pants half-way down their legs with their underwear showing without using associative words or phrases).

    As I learned it ‘Yankee’ has no issues attached, it’s a friendly description because it’s the shortest way to describe someone who lives north of us (and Southerners like using speech ‘shortcuts’), ‘Damn-yankee’ is a little more slanted and would only be used if Southern culture was offended, f—–g Yankee’s is a used when they win another World Series game.
    It might be understanding that with the history of Vicksburg there may be some lingering feelings 150 years later – I understand there’s a lot of cemeteries around that still bare scars..

    See, it’s a real crappy subject…….

    As for food I can directly relate to that – for meals on the lower I was flavoring rice with different things – soup, pork n beans, bullion etc. You guys are burning a lot more energy than I, awesome job. I know where you are too and the river is slow, hot, and to a large degree boring and depressing, especially with all the miles you have under your belt now – from what I know of you two you won’t let it drain you. How are the paddle’s holding out?

    Totally awesome, if you want a clean mountain lake to cleanse your spirit – come through the Mountains of South Carolina when you complete your trip –and let us know if there is any way we can help before or after then……

  3. 210 Check out the barge on the INSIDE (shortcut) of the island at 210.

    175.5 right bank, where a power line crosses – a walk just over the levee is Donaldsonville – good food close.

    143.3 L -The last good beach to camp on or stop at, and in easy striking distance of NO is 143.3 behind marker on Left bank.

    122 R Very short walk to store (just over levee, Right bank) at 122 under 310 bridge.

    102.5 R closed park dock (barge) to sleep on if needed – Left bank (bathroom hop over fence)

    93.5 R At the Canal street walk (@93) left bank is an easy take-out, access point where all the tourist walk – good ending point if you need one.

    I know you get to these infrequently, so I went ahead and put them in.

  4. Gentlemen,

    Hell, you might as well finish the trip now.

    Good luck the rest of the way. Please send me a signed copy of the book you MUST write.

    Jeff (and Rabies), Dubuque, Ia

  5. WaltzingDot Says:

    I’ve been following your progress all the way and as a 73-year-old softie, I’m mightily impressed at your endurance. Just today my husband and I drove back to Saint Paul from the Fur Trade Rendezvous on Madeline Island and, of course, crossed the Namekagon River. Thought of you again then, and when I got home and found that you’re already past Vicksburg, I decided I should throw in my two cents and tell you how much I’ve enjoyed travelling down the River vicariously with you two. Bon Courage!

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