~Monday, April 17, 2023~
Day 1,038 (Travel Day)
The day got off to a great start when we loaded up on some sustenance for the road at a local Starbucks; that is until someone yelled out “Anger” for my order. Who in their right mind would name their child “Anger” nor would I think a barista would ever want to encounter someone with that name. In the end, I guess “Anger” didn’t really stand out to them having heard a slew of other interesting names before, such as “Santa Claus”, “Happy”, “007”, and “Beyonce” to name a few.
Today is our first glimpse of what we love so much about the Carolinas….clean air, less congestion, lime-colored green trees as far as the eye can see, and MOUNTAINS!! We’ve missed them so much! There is so much three dimensionality to this Blue Ridge Mountain region with a great deal of it reminding us of Napa, CA, our home of 30 years. After being in Florida for so long, it was a bit strange to have those ears popping again with the elevation gain. Even hearing Hank rev up again on the many hills we encountered today, was seemingly unusual. It was so surreal to be crossing back through towns that we had visited a few years ago or had simply heard about in our real estate search. The pleasant weather is a welcome change from the swampy, humid feel we’ve had lately. The only part we could have done without today was the road construction of Highway 26. It’s not only a 5-year nightmare for motorists, but for truckers and RVers especially. When you’ve got a semi passing you at 60 mph with only an inch between you and their trailer, it’s enough to give anybody the willies! 😳We now know to avoid this stretch of highway on Thursdays or Fridays, as those are the days semis come in and out of Port Charleston to load up on goods for delivery up through this interior corridor. This 22-mile $534 million project began in October of 2019. The projection was to have it complete by summer of 2024, now set for 2025 due to delays. Isn’t that always the case? So it will certainly be something we’ll have to deal with in moving to the area.
Our destination for today was in the adorable town of Brevard. Our campground of Davidson River located in a unique biodiverse area known as the Pisgah National Forest will be “home” to us for several weeks. We weren’t able to book a solid 2 weeks at one campsite, so we’ll have to move over just a few sites down next Sunday to finish out our remaining time here. After that, we’ll be staying right in Asheville until mid May before making our way to Illinois to be there in time for the birth of our first granddaughter, that is, if she doesn’t decide to come sooner.
Arriving at our familiar campground (we stayed here 2 years ago), it was pretty empty having arrived on a Monday.
Maybe by Friday, we’ll have a little more forest company since this is a popular spot for local campers. Even though we don’t have hookups of any kind, the sheer beauty of this forest is enough to make anyone want to stay here. And we can’t complain with the fact we have a water spigot close enough to connect our fresh water hose to fill up our tank as needed.
In less than an hour, we were all set up and I was off to the grocery store. Gone are the Publix stores of Florida, now replaced with the Ingles chain in the Carolinas. They’re both very similar in terms of their size and layout, but with the fact they don’t carry my favorite oatmilk, coffee and cacao powder, Publix will be sorely missed. I did manage, however, to find some decent alternatives and per the usual, had no trouble filling the grocery cart to the brim. As I walked back to the car, I had my third “sign” of
being back in this region……a Mazda Miata convertible, in the exact color and the exact year as Jeff’s which is nicely being stored for us at our son, Shane’s house. O.k. then, I guess Jeff’s car will have no trouble fitting right in the “Tar Heel” state. Having made it to our third “sign”, since things happen in “3’s”, I’d say this is where we’re supposed to be.