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[ Future of the Delta Queen Steamboat Co Boats ]


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Date: May 01, 2002 at 02:20:35
From: Captain Mike Williams, [user-119at1j.biz.mindspring.com]
Subject: The Captains Log


Here on the Steamer Mississippi Queen we are today in a common goal, to get our Certificate of inspection from the US Coast Guard, and to have the MQ looking better than she has in years. We are rapidly approaching both, as the Coast Guard begins our annual inspection tommorrow and today the remainder of the entire crew has returned. It is a noisy, happy scene of seeming confusion, but each respective department has begun putting the finishing touches on the boat, and in a day or so, it will shine like new. As usual, we have had the normal pre-sailing glitches, but every problem has been worked through calmly. It is great to have the whole crew back a week before boarding passengers, because we get to throughly test all systems and work out the bugs before guests come on board. The Mississippi Queen is now a totally self sufficient, operational vessel. Fully fueled,water tanks run over with fresh, cold drinking water,the steam plant providing hot water and electricity,she is a living entity. With the beginning of the 2 day Coast Guard Inspection, we are nearing the day we shall sail again, wish us luck!
Of course I go up to the Delta Queen every day to check her lines and bilges, and to just say hello. She rests quietly, tugging gently against her lines in the wakes of passing ships and tows. Inside, she is still dry and clean, but there are hints of mildew beginning to show on some of her outer deck overheads. I'm going to try to give her a quick bleach solution wash down before I go home. In the cabins on her upper decks, you can smell the Oregon Cedar scent of the lumber with which she was built, still detectable after all of these years and especially strong now due to the lack of air conditioning. Basically, shes still fine, but each time I leave her I feel as I were leaving my grandmother in a nursing home. I feel she calls to me to take her home, home to her family, you, the steamboaters, and to the river towns and folks who are her real family and to whom she really belongs. This noble endeavor to revive steamboating has just begun. Of course we want to see the Grand American Queen sail again also, but we all know that the steamboat family will never be complete until the Legendary Delta Queen sails again. We will keep or hopes high and our faith strong, until we are reunited on the decks of the DElta Queen again. Good Night from "The Wharf".


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