Today we left before dawn in the wet cold to get to the Fulton Lock before barge traffic started. By the time we reached the lock, just a few miles away, the first light of day had started to break through the clouds. We were joined by 5 other boats in the lock, some of which had traveled with us from the same marina that we'd stayed at. Others had anchored out overnight tucked outside the channel on the TennTombigbee Waterway. Our pack of 6 traveled throughout the day from lock to lock until we'd locked through 4 locks totaling more than 100 mile drop in water levels. We cruised through beautiful landscapes that featured eagles perched on light posts near locks and atop trees along the water's edge. We saw lots of water fowl along the way. We even saw a black hunting dog seeming to be tracking a deer as we approached the last lock. Both were swimming in the river in the escape and chase. We're docked at Columbus Marina for a few days before continuing our trek down the river to Mobile Bay.

We spent part of our time exploring the town of Columbus, Mississippi using the courtesy car. Some marinas have courtesy cars that you can use for 2 hours and return it with a bit of added fuel. We ate at Harveys downtown in the bar (suggested by Tasha and Dave) and then started our self-guided tour at Tennessee Williams' childhood home. His grandfather was the Episcopal minister in town. It is now the visitors' center. Then we checked out the Friendship Cemetery where the women cleaned and decorated soldiers' Graves during the Civil War, both the fallen northern and southern soldiers. Then we wove through the streets of downtown. When we got back to the marina, we did some laundry and watched some college football. We also greeted the new boats as they came into the marina for the night. We took a walk along the Stennis Lock that we'll pass through in the morning. It was a chilly damp visit to Columbus. One of the boats that we've met sums up how we're feeling...Chasing 90 (boat name referencing that they are looking for 90 degrees!)