Take Me to the RiversBoating the Rivers of America from Wisconsin to FloridaBoating down the Mississippi, Ohio, Cumberland, Tennessee-Tombigbee Rivers, and Mobile Bay to the Florida Intracoastal in the fall of 2018 might be described in retrospect as a series of near misses. The river conditions were extreme, characterized by the worst fall flooding in recorded history. And at the end of our trip, the strongest category 5 hurricane ever to make landfall, Hurricane Michael, engulfed us within its eye.Take Me to the Rivers chronicles my husband's and my fifteen-hundred-mile journey by boat to both remote and well-traveled parts of some of the greatest rivers of America. Setting out on a course to Punta Gorda, Florida, we began our river adventures on the Upper Mississippi River in La Crosse, Wisconsin, continuing all the way through St. Louis, Missouri. We then found ourselves in the wild and ruthless wilderness of the Mississippi River up to the junction of the Ohio River. We traveled up the Ohio to the Kentucky Lakes, where we rested for several days and got a glimpse of the elegant and pampered side of river boating. Continuing south, we entered remote areas that had yet to be charted in GPS. Traveling on the Tennessee-Tombigbee Rivers, through Mobile Bay, we finally arrived on the Florida Intracoastal. In October 2018, our trip was cut short abruptly and with finality in Panama City when Hurricane Michael destroyed our boat and our dreams of boating our way through retirement.The book is written as a series of everyday short stories--stories about the people we met and the rivers that tried to swallow us alive. With its in-depth descriptions, it provides interesting insights for Quimby's Guide travelers as well as for those who have only been able to dream of boating from Wisconsin to Florida. In addition, the uniqueness of the river people we met on this journey and the extreme river and weather conditions we lived through will make this book appealing to an adventurous and curious audience.Highlights that stand out in the author's mind include a 360-degree fascination with the Mississippi River bluffs, the World War that was averted with an LST-325 Navy warship, our only tourist trap destination in Hannibal, Missouri, the incredible spectacle of the St. Louis Arch, dining at Bobby's Fish Camp, the winners and losers along the Kentucky Lakes, the statue of the Mistaken Klansman, floating bollard mastery techniques, and Hurricane Michael in Panama City.As much as I loved writing about these and other stories, our close encounters with the people we met along the way are the lifeblood of the book. It was a matter of life and death on the rivers in the fall of 2018. Many people shared their lives with us on this journey; many people helped to save our lives--the lives of total strangers.