Doing nothing is doing something. Doing nothing is doing something. Words that make perfect sense at face value, but (much) easier said than done.
Wit, sarcasm and nuance are a central part of my DNA, but have felt none of it for the past two weeks. If you’re looking for the usual outlay of that sort of thing, let me establish proper expectations.
Nothing to see here….Move along.
That phrase, “You just never fully know what others are going through” has new meaning for me right now.
Before anyone reaches any incorrect conclusions, Lynn and I are fine and the motorhome is a typical house on wheels with more problems and surprises than should reasonably be expected by rational people.
When we last left off three weeks ago, Lynn and I were in the Upstate of South Carolina, waiting for hurricane season to simmer down. Four different issues relating to the entrance door area lead to a phone call to Newmar, which lead to the Newmar rep exclaiming that no dealer in the country could truly diagnose and correct this potentially serious issue. So, we pointed Julie North to Indiana and drove fourteen hours in two days back to the factory.
Nappanee Indiana – We hate to go there….but then we hate to leave. We experienced a true American small town parade and festival, got to experience “Amish Crack” (an amazing apple filled powdered doughnut), Lynn got to pose in a front yard filled with mannequins (and their “husband”) and learned two new card games, one an Amish game called Dutch Blitz. A bunch of issues were corrected and some remain. Oh, and we were at the factory when the news broke that Newmar was acquired by Winnebago.
A week later, Julie pointed South and we retraced our route from Indiana, stopping for two nights in both Kentucky and Tennessee before arriving in Hilton Head Island for three nights. In Kentucky, we stayed at the Kentucky Horse Park Campground in Lexington and it was a quiet, well laid out property, a nice respite from the sounds of constant freight train whistles and horse and buggies passing behind our rig in Nappannee.
In Tennessee, we loved Anchors Down Resort, perched above Douglas Lake in the town of Dandridge. We could have stayed here for a month – it was that peaceful – with ink-black skies and visible planets and stars almost down to the horizon. But, as we had to catch up to our original plans, onward we pushed.
From Tennessee, I tackled the road that had caused me much consternation – I-40 from Knoxville to Asheville. It includes a section of approximately thirty steep, twisting miles that I swore never to take Julie on. As a matter of fact, the week prior while heading to Newmar, we added ninety minutes to the trip, avoiding this section and routing North via Johnson City, TN. Well, I sucked it up and drove I-40, repeating to myself in tight turns that people I know are doing much harder things. We got through it unscathed and back to the coastal flat lands of the Carolinas.
Finding any wit or nuance yet? No…didn’t think so. There’s probably a good show on TV…or perhaps you could do a load of laundry. I won’t feel offended. (OK, that was a bit witty.)
Driving over the bridge from Bluffton, SC into Hilton Head, the island of pretentiousness, I caught a glimpse of the Hilton Garden Inn. Here I stayed for countless dozens of nights when Lynn was still in Massachusetts trying to sell the house and I was running a bottled water company with a branch location on Hilton Head. Sixteen years ago, we’d have never imagined driving back onto Hilton Head, “homeless” and living on the road. Go figure…
This Hilton Head campground has a different take on site selection. Rather than reserving a specific site or a certain type of site…here you show up, borrow a golf cart and then drive around with a plastic cone and drop it, essentially picking any open spot. While it seemed strange at first, we really liked the idea and found an awesome spot under Spanish moss covered trees.
OK, almost done. (Saying that for my benefit, not yours.)
We arrived to Jekyll Island, Georgia yesterday (Sunday, September 29) to attend our first camping rally. One surprise were a set of three unmanned toll booths entering the island. Even if my arms were ten feet long, they’d not have reached the pad where you had to swipe your credit card for the gate to raise. So, in true “@&*$%%# Fire Drill” fashion, Lynn had to jump out of the rig, run in front, pay at the machine and then as the arm raised, jump back into the rig and I had to get sixty feet forward before ripping the gate off. This rally is put on by a group called Xscapers and they call this a “Convergence”. It is focused towards working aged RV’ers, some Fulltimers like us or “Sometimers” as well. This event has about twenty five rigs and more than fifty total people. Some are solo travelers and others couples and families with small kiddos. All of the scheduled events are in the evenings as some people work from their rigs. Activities include rig tours, crabbing and Low Country Boil, pot luck dinners, campfires, a sunset / booze boat cruise and trip turtle rescue center. We have exclusive use of a community center and the organizers kicked off a “Take One / Leave One” beer fridge, which of course we think is a marvelous idea. Last night thirty or so people sat around a campfire, trading stories and drinking beers while someone played the guitar and a jar of North Carolina moonshine was passed around the crowd.
After six months of reduced social interaction living in our rig, my first words to Lynn this morning was, “This extrovert feels overwhelmed.”
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Lynn’s 2 cents – I am so glad to be back on track with our plans. Although damn it is hot here! Being a part of this Xscapers RV community was something I was really looking forward to when we set out. So here we are at our first rally. I can already say it won’t be our last! Looking forward to a super fun week ahead!