Galena, Illinois: A Trip You Both Can Love
Cruising the edge
On our last morning, Teri's making her biggest concession to my tastes. We're kayaking through the Mississippi's backwaters, plowing long Vs toward a blue heron rising on unhurried wing beats.
Teri's chatting with a Fever River Outfitters guide about kids and bird-watching. She looks calm enough, swinging her paddle in graceful dips. But I know she's cruising the far edge of her comfort zone. When I ask if she's afraid of giant mutant snapping turtles, she says, "No!" and pauses. "I'm just worried about rolling over. And I don't know what's under that water."
Still, she's out here. And trading her little black dress for a life jacket sparks my emotions more than a week of candlelight. Good relationships, after all, are about finding middle ground. And Galena turns out to be a meeting place we can agree on.
(A version of this story appeared in Midwest Living® March/April 2008.)