Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Day 93-128 so many miles so little internet


Miles Total: I'll figure that out later

OMG 128 days! OK so this is going to be a lot … from South Carolina to Georgia, Orlando, Titusville, Fort Myers, St. Petersburg, Tampa, Ybor City, and Tallahasse Florida. Up to/through Georgia to Eufaula, Alabama (beautiful old Southern charm) to Tuscaloosa, Birmingham and Gardendale. 

Then onto Nashville Tennessee,  Bowling Green, Kentucky back to Nashville, TN, down to Meridian, Mississippi across the state through Jackson and Vicksburg (dodging a  hurricane), zipped through Louisiana into Texas (before the hurricane could catch up to us) for a few days and now up to Eufaula, Oklahoma (yup another Eufaula) sitting at a waterfront campsite of one of the largest man made lakes in the US… Whew I’m exhausted just thinking about it LOL

We have traveled a long way, had some wonderful visits with friends and family and eaten our way through Florida (OMG I have to stop doing this). We have hung out with some amazing people, been disappointed in a few, but had a great time nonetheless. We have found some of the most amazing (and cheap) parks all through these parts of the country. Built and run by the the US Army Corps of Engineers... Outstanding!

As we were heading out of South Carolina we decided to stop for a night at Edisto Beach State Park. I know Jimmy posted a picture of our unwanted guest there (a huge ground wasp) digging a hole right in front of our door for a nest. Well being the brave and woodsy kind of folks we ... called the ranger to take out his handy, dandy can of wasp spray and bury it in its nicely dug hole. I swear Jimmy thought that darn thing was going to climb out and get us LOL.

It was about that time that we realized we had to tighten up our timeline so we could hang out with one of our family members in Florida before their surgery so we could bug out of town and leave them to recovery mode without us around. It was a wonderful visit and the next time round we will get to relax a little more.

We did make it to Titusville. FL but only to have lunch at the Dixie Crossroads then onto Fort Myers to have a long lunch visit with a old friend from Nashua and a stay at the first of our US Army Corps of Engineer Campgrounds. WOW right on the water, quiet and beautiful. We never got to see the local gator but I guess I was good with that. Then up to Tampa and Ybor and a great visit with another wonderful friend. We visited Ybor City to have Cuban food and cigars and take in the local ambiance (roosters and all), got a tour of St. Petersburg and just late nights talking. A great visit and really looking forward to coming back through again.

From there we started working our way north again through Tallahassee up between Georgia / Alabama border to rest for a few days in Eufaula, AL. We choose this stop to let an Arizona friend know we were thinking of her and got a real surprise at the beautiful (USACOE) campground and wonderful southern beauty. We met some great folks that were our neighbors there, great conversations, even some wonderful smoked pork BBQ. We were actually sorry to move on from there.

We headed up north of Birmingham, Alabama to meet with some friends from Nashua, NH at a local Cracker Barrel and its a good thing the place was not busy because we talked and talked and talked until we remembered we needed to get to our campsite outside Nashville, TN before the end of the day. Along the way between all these places we stopped at various cigar shops/bars to try out some of the local tobacco... Ybor City was hand rolled cigars, Alabama and Kentucky some very nice local brands and we were to find more on our journey on the way through Nashville.

Ah Nashville Tennessee ... it's funny how things happen on the road. We stopped at a cigar bar to grab a few sticks and although the ratings were high our perceptions did not match theirs. The humidor was less than stellar and their selection a little weak but we did manage to get something to help replenish our depleting stock. We headed out to our campsite after office hours but we knew our location so that didn't matter. As we approached our site we found interlopers eating at our picnic table. LOL! Come to find out they were from Italy doing a tour of the US in a car. We told them to stay as there was enough room for both vehicles in the spot. Nice people and an interesting encounter. We also had great neighbors who were looking forward to traveling in a couple of years like we were... they hung out with us at our campfire the second night and it's always good to have interesting company to share with.

Next up Kentucky...we were worried about getting a spot outside Bowling Green, KY on a holiday weekend as I was only able to book 1 night at the site. So I called the location to find out if there were any first come first serve spots. I spoke with a great lady called Bunnie and she knew we were full time travelers and told us to come early anyway and they would do what they could to get us in. So we gambled and it paid off. We were on their doorstep at 7:30AM on the Thursday morning of the last holiday weekend of summer. Labor Day! It was too early for the office to open so I knocked on their door and at first the gentleman said they had no room. But then when I said I talked to Bunnie last week... I got "Oh your the travelers from Arizona?" When I agreed he said we have a spot for you how long do you need it for??? HAHAHAHAHA We were so relieved. We went to our spot and setup for the weekend.

First thing next morning we headed to our friends at Nemesis Arms outside Bowling Green for a tour of the shop and a great visit. We agreed to meet up the next day to see the Corvette Museum with their family and had a wonderful time... More food and hopefully a decent interview (I have to go through and edit it to post). We took a day or two to crash and then another quick stop at Nemesis for some photos and on the road BACK to Nashville to visit a very cool range.

The Royal Range USA, wow what a place. It's a state of the art shooting range outside Nashville, TN that lives in a converted movie theater. YUP with neon lights on the sign outside and everything. It is incredible. We were there to meet with a new friend Carl Fuerst  who writes a fun blog for the range called the Fuerst (first) Option. Carl is an instructor and safety officer there and does an amazing job. I'll write more about this stop in a separate piece on kktgradio in about a week or so.  But more about our travels. 

From Nashville we were headed towards Texas but there was a little thing called a hurricane that was trying to slow us down. So when the rain got heavy we stopped to do the laundry or pulled into a Walmart. We played duck and cover for about a day and half. We called a place in Mississippi to reserve a spot for the night and they just chuckled and said there wouldn't be an issue getting a spot so we headed over for the night outside Meridian (that's where we left our step stool to get in and out of the RV) :-(.  As the rain and lousy weather continued we decided to zip through Louisiana and avoid anymore nastiness and stop at a rest area just across the Texas border for one night and make an early start of it the next day.

We already had reservations for a spot in Hickory Creek, TX but needed to pick up a car to visit with family and just generally enjoy the area but WOW Dallas and the surrounding area is crazy with highways, traffic and google maps that can't figure out if your up or down. INSANE!! But we arrived and even though it rained on and off most of the weekend we had a great visit. As my husband said, rainy day but seemed sunny with the best company. Thanks to Allen, Lorrie, Chris, Shawn and Kaitlyn (not to forget the German Shepard Sam) with the added bonus of Alicia and Chris visiting from Minnesota. Fun filled weekend.

Now we sit here at a campground in Eufaula,Oklahoma at another lake front spot enjoying a little down time while we figure where we are headed next. 

Now let's not forget that in between all the lines there's finding laundromats, hairdressers, grocery shopping, and all the little things you need to do to live. You don't know how dependent you become on washer and dryers, local stores that know you and OMG my hairdresser LOL. You also don't know what kind of a neighborhood your in from the map until you get there. That can be pretty intense sometimes. And oh my goodness, the quarters you go through... I was so excited when I found a laundromat in Texas that took credit cards.  It's all part of the adventure though and yes we are going to upgrade when we get back as this is a BIG country and we've only just scratched the surface.

PS More photos on Facebook at Kruegers View group. If you need an invite send me a note in messenger.

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