Tuesday, September 2nd, 2008

For many years, the Delta Queen was based out of New Orleans. She has made so many trips on that glorious Lower Mississippi River. Many of our crew members are from that area. We send our thoughts and prayers to all those impacted by Hurricane Gustav.

After the devastating tragedy inflicted by Hurricane Katrina, I wrote a song for the residents of this precarious place. Here are the lyrics, dedicated to all of you that endure such difficulty to keep The Big Easy going:
ONE OF A KIND by Bill Wiemuth
My heart aches for New Orleans
Like a stone was thrown down in my soul
For I often have danced in her streets
And laughed with the people I’d meet
Tasted life, oh, so sweet
One of a kind – New Orleans

Stood in places of history
Oh, to be where it all began
To make some history of my own
Folks always made me feel so at home
Only to be left there on their own
One of a kind – New Orleans

It’s all been washed away
I want to take the St. Charles Trolley out to Audubon Park
Or stroll by the Mississippi along the river walk
If I have to I’ll get a drink on Bourbon Street at a bar called Noah’s Ark
One of a kind – New Orleans

Nothing like the river to remind you
Life just keeps rolling along
Though there may be a spring with no Magnolia blooms
And it may be a while ‘til the mockingbird croons
But I already hear those Dixieland tunes
One of a kind – New Orleans

And when finally the water goes down
And sadness gives birth to a magical town
The parade will march. She’ll wear a crown
One of a kind – New Orleans


Due to the closure of Cheatham Lock and Dam for maintenance, the Delta Queen could not proceed all the way in to Nashville. The boat instead finished one cruise and began the next today in Clarksville, TN. It is about an hour ride from the Nashville airport, but it worked out alright. All passengers arrived in good spirits, ready to begin an 11-day cruise down the Cumberland River and then up the Ohio River all the way to Pittsburgh. It’s a journey of about 1,100 miles through some beautiful scenery and visiting delightful ports of call.

It’s hard to imagine that there is now less than two months left in the Delta Queen’s season before it will be forced out of service due to lack of Congressional action. My heart is heavy with the thought but I remain committed to savoring every precious moment and giving all my efforts to helping effect another extension on the Delta Queen’s exemption.