Man locates mystery date with newspaper ad

Robert Ratte found his mystery Grand Junction woman from the Danube River, but he doesn’t know yet whether she will accompany him on a river trip from Minnesota to Florida.

Ratte, a Minnesotan, bought a full-page ad in last Sunday’s Daily Sentinel hoping to contact the Grand Junction woman, whose contact information he lost after the end of the trip down the Danube.

He knew she had been a WAVE in World War II, had an adventurous nature and was a regular Friday-night square dancer.

A friend saw the ad on Sunday and later that night told her, “I think this is you,” Ratte said, “so she called me.”

She asked that he not identify her to anyone, and he agreed.

To do otherwise “would take the mystery out of the program” anyway, Ratte said. “She’s a very interesting lady.”

That leaves open the question of whether she will take up Ratte’s offer for another river tour, this one of the All-American variety.

“It’s like Mark Twain,” Ratte said. “We’ll be re-enacting Mark Twain.”

Sure enough, Ratte’s trip south from Minnesota will include a run down the Mississippi River on a route leading through Key West and ending in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

Ratte’s boat, the Water Gremlin, has three staterooms, and Ratte would appreciate company on the 23- to 25-day trip down the river.

Most owners of the boats that ply the Caribbean don’t take their craft on river trips such as the one Ratte is contemplating, “but I love the ride on the boat,” he said.

“Why pay for the fuel and not get any enjoyment out of it?”

His square-dancing friend seems to have the requisite sense of adventure, Ratte said, noting she was touring Grand Mesa on Sunday.

“Now I’m waiting to see if she’s go down river with me,” he said. “I’m working on that. I’m working it hard.”

He had planned to embark on his trip Sunday, but put it off until Monday, so he can attend church and have dinner with his daughter, he said.

And wait on her answer.

In the meantime, there’s one thing of which Ratte is sure: “I’m a believer in advertising.”


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