As of January 1, 2019, we have closed our forums. This is a decision we did not come to lightly, but it is necessary. The software our forums run on is just too out-of-date and it poses a significant security risk. The server software itself must be updated, and it cannot be without removing the forums.
So it is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to our long-running forums. They came online in 2000 and brought together so many wonderful Disney fans. We had friendships form, careers launch, couples marry, children born ... all because of this amazing community.
Thank you to each of you who were a part of this community. You made it possible.
And a very special thank you to our Guides (moderators), past and present, who kept our forums a happy place to be. You are the glue that held everything together, and we are forever grateful to you. Thank you aliceinwdw, Caldercup, MrsM, WillCAD, Fortissimo, GingerJ, HiddenMickey, CRCrazy, Eeyoresmom, disneyknut, disneydani, Cam22, chezp, WDWfan, Luvsun, KMB733, rescuesk, OhToodles!, Colexis Mom, lfredsbo, HiddenMickey, DrDolphin, DopeyGirl, duck addict, Disneybine, PixieMichele, Sandra Bostwick, Eeyore Tattoo, DyanKJ130, Suzy Q'Disney, LilMarcieMouse, AllisonG, Belle*, Chrissi, Brant, DawnDenise, Crystalloubear, Disneymom9092, FanOfMickey, Goofy4Goofy, GoofyMom, Home4us123, iamgrumpy, ilovedisney247, Jennifer2003, Jenny Pooh, KrisLuvsDisney, Ladyt, Laughaholic88, LauraBelle Hime, Lilianna, LizardCop, Loobyoxlip, lukeandbrooksmom, marisag, michnash, MickeyMAC, OffKilter_Lynn, PamelaK, Poor_Eeyore, ripkensnana, RobDVC, SHEANA1226, Shell of the South, snoozin, Statelady01, Tara O'Hara, tigger22, Tink and Co., Tinkerbelz, WDWJAMBA, wdwlovers, Wendyismyname, whoSEZ, WildforWD, and WvuGrrrl. You made the magic.
We want to personally thank Sara Varney, who coordinated our community for many years (among so many other things she did for us), and Cheryl Pendry, our Message Board Manager who helped train our Guides, and Ginger Jabour, who helped us with the PassPorter-specific forums and Live! Guides. Thank you for your time, energy, and enthusiasm. You made it all happen.
There are other changes as well.
Why? Well, the world has changed. And change with it, we must. The lyrics to "We Go On" for IllumiNations say it best:
We go on to the joy and through the tears
We go on to discover new frontiers
Moving on with the current of the years.
We go on
Moving forward now as one
Moving on with a spirit born to run
Ever on with each rising sun.
To a new day, we go on.
It's time to move on and move forward.
PassPorter is a small business, and for many years it supported our family. But the world changed, print books took a backseat to the Internet, and for a long time now it has been unable to make ends meet. We've had to find new ways to support our family, which means new careers and less and less time available to devote to our first baby, PassPorter.
But eventually, we must move on and move forward. It is the right thing to do.
So we are retiring this newsletter, as we simply cannot keep up with it. Many thanks to Mouse Fan Travel who supported it all these years, to All Ears and MousePlanet who helped us with news, to our many article contributors, and -- most importantly -- to Sara Varney who edited our newsletter so wonderfully for years and years.
And we are no longer charging for the Live Guides. If you have a subscription, it's yours to keep for the lifetime of the Live Guides at no additional cost. The Live Guides will stay online, barring server issues and technical problems, for all of 2019.
That said, PassPorter is not going away. Most of the resources will remain online for as long as we can support them, and after that we will find ways to make whatever we can available. PassPorter means a great deal to us, and to many of you, and we will do our best to keep it alive in whatever way we can. Our server costs are high, and they'll need to come out of our pockets, so in the future you can expect some changes so we can bring those costs down.
Thank you, thank you, thank you for your amazing support over the years. Without you, there's no way us little guys could have made something like this happen and given the "big guys" a run for their money. PassPorter was consistently the #3 guidebook after the Unofficial and Official guides, which was really unheard of for such a small company to do. We ROCKED it thanks to you and your support and love!
If you miss us, you can still find some of us online. Sara started a new blog at DisneyParkPrincess.com -- I strongly urge you to visit and get on her mailing list. She IS the Disney park princess and knows Disney backward and forward. And I am blogging as well at JenniferMaker.com, which is a little craft blog I started a couple of years ago to make ends meet. You can see and hear me in my craft show at https://www.youtube.com/c/jennifermaker . Many PassPorter readers and fans are on Facebook, in groups they formed like the PassPorter Trip Reports and PassPorter Crafting Challenge (if you join, just let them know you read about it in the newsletter). And some of our most devoted community members started a forum of their own at Pixie Dust Lane and all are invited over.
So we encourage you to stay in touch with us and your fellow community members wherever works best for you!
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… and we saw a huge number of swans all happily settled on the banks of the river. I don’t think I’ve ever seen more than about four or five together at any one time, so this was a first for me.
As we approached the bridge at Reedham, we suddenly realised that it was swinging open. What on earth was coming the other way? We couldn’t see anything, and we checked behind us. There was nothing behind us, certainly nothing that would warrant having the bridge opened. Maybe it was just opening up for us? As we got closer, we could see the message that the bridge would be open until 4:00pm, and it was now 3:25pm, so I guess it’s just one of those things it does, but it was neat that we were the first boat to go through it once it had opened!
Then we were back out into the open water, with no-one around us…
… but only for a little while, as we were soon overtaken…
Soon we were approaching the Reedham ferry again, although it wasn’t operating, as there was no-one waiting. What everyone seemed to do was to park up on one side or the other, then go as a foot passenger, which I know is a lot cheaper.
We then passed by this magnificent old tug boat…
That meant we were back at the Loddon turnoff where we’d joined the main river this morning, and now we were on our way back towards Brundall, where we’d started out yesterday.
The wind was still pretty stiff, which made for some pretty good sailing weather, judging by these guys…
It wasn’t long before we were approaching Cantley, which you can see a mile (or few off, thanks to the massive British Sugar factory there. I loved the way Mark said “they made no attempt to disguise it”. I did ask him how he’d disguise it, given its huge size, and he suggested making it look like windmills.
I decided to get a bit arty with some close-up shots of the water…
Finally we had another wildlife spotting, and I do love these birds:
We had some beautiful scenery in the late afternoon light…
Suddenly we were into a stretch of the river with green fields alongside, and we knew this was where we’d seen my boys yesterday, but no such luck today sadly.
Now we knew that water skiing is permitted on stretches along the river, but we hadn’t actually seen any. Well, suddenly within a couple of minutes of each other, we saw two – and my goodness, the wake they throw up was quite something, even for our boat!
We carried on along, losing the light quicker than we’d expected, given that it wasn’t even 5:00pm. We were heading for Rockland Broad, close to where we’d started out from yesterday, but we both started to worry that perhaps it would be a bit late when we got there, and there could be no mooring.
Anyway, before we could worry too much about that, we found some of my bovine buddies alongside the river. Now whether they were the same ones from yesterday, I’m not 100% sure. The brown cow was definitely a calf, and I’m sure the one I saw yesterday was full size… anyway, what did I care? I had cows to admire!
Mark pointed out that there was a pub a little bit further up the river, and it looked like it had mooring available, plus there was no-one nearby to moan about us having our engines on to heat the boat so we figured we’d moor up there. Now this time, we managed it, just the two of us, which I was really pleased with. Maybe we’re getting better at this boating lark, although I don’t want to tempt fate and speak too soon!