Whisper Reunion, Bill and Judy
26 April 2021
It is hard to know where to begin telling about our cruising friends, Bill and Judy. Judy raced with us on Veloce during the early 90's. We raced against Bill's Olson 911 on occasion and surely enjoyed a few at the yacht club bar. Both Bill and Judy also did the Milwaukee River bar hopping on our 1909 launch, Putt Putt Boat.
We moved to the River Retreat in 2011 and sure enough, Bill and Judy lived only about four blocks away. We both planned on leaving Milwaukee in July 2015 to go cruising. For months we got together for dinners and more than a little wine to plan our new life afloat. Whisper left a week before Uproar but we met up in the North Channel of Lake Huron a few weeks later. We cruised through the beautiful North Channel and Georgian Bay. Lisa and I had never cruised Georgian Bay but Bill and Judy showed us some of their favorite spots in these pristine waters.
We met up a month later in the 1000 islands area where Lake Ontario meets the St. Lawrence Seaway. Together we cruised that area and down to Oswego and Erie Canals. Sundays were always a challenge to find a bar to watch Packer games in some of these largely abandoned towns.
After the Annapolis Boat show in October, Chesapeake Bay was our cruising ground for six weeks. Then we parted company as Lisa and I sailed to the Abacos. Whisper sailed further down the ICW and arrived in the Bahamas after us. Uproar sailed on to the Caribbean and that is the last we saw of Whisper.
Our reunion came just five days ago after seeing Whisper last in fall of 2015. Whisper is heading north, back to Florida and Uproar is heading south, to continue cruising in the Exumas. We met in Lee Stocking and enjoyed three days and evenings together. What memories we shared during our late, evening dinners. We all expressed how lucky we have been to live the cruising life and to have enjoyed each other's inspiration and friendship.
That's not to say we hadn't seen Bill and Judy all that time. We occasionally saw them when we returned to Milwaukee for short visits. And they joined us in French Polynesia to sail on Uproar with us for a few weeks. A great time!
Here are some highlights:
Sailing Whisper through the treacherous Parting Channel, Georgian Bay, (too dangerous for Uproar).
Cleaning and shucking oysters from Chesapeake for three hours on the back of Uproar. Bill and I looked like we had had a mud bath. Oysters were well worth it!
All the great snorkeling together, Bahamas and French Polynesia.
Of course the many sundowners, dinners and stories.
The laughs from other cruisers when Whisper called Uproar on the radio.
We will be seeing Bill and Judy again this summer in Milwaukee, our first break from cruising in six years. Thanks guys for everything. Love you guys!