So we have been traveling through the South.
After our visit to Washington D.C., we headed inland to Lynchburg, Virginia. Our route took us past the headquarters of the NRA and then down the Robert E. Lee highway to the edge of the Shenandoah Mountains. Our main goal for this leg of the journey was to do potty training boot camp for Jane. This location turned out to be ideal. The weather was cold, neighbors were sparse, and there were few attractions. Jane ran around Bernadette with no pants for three days. She now has the gist; which is to say that her shoes only smell a little like pee.
We actually stayed away from the city proper, only straying near for provisions. The few outings we took during our visit were oriented toward the nearby Blue Ridge Parkway and James River. Our travels have taken us through a significant subset of this country's diverse geographic landscapes. Maybe a sad consequence is that when the novel becomes norm, it is hard to be blown-away by a new place. So central Virgina, the Shenandoah's, and the mighty James receive my appreciation, but fail to move me to poetry.
Per our ongoing prerogative to stay ahead of the cold, our next hop was south to North Carolina. We stayed at a beautiful county park that was insufficiently near anywhere else to say it was near something.
My father-in-law has a pejorative term for organized (scripted) recreational activities: power-fun. We did not venture outside of our secluded North Carolina park. We instead took advantage of the beautiful lake, scenery, and several playgrounds. This was our unconscious reaction to the abundant power-fun we undertook north of the Mason-Dixon line.
This down-time also fruited further advances in the child development department. Whereas Tommy has been intensely interested in learning to walk for the past couple months, he had still been limited to being pulled-up by parental hands. In North Carolina, Tommy figured out how to pull himself up. In recognition of this big-boy skill, we also [finally] divorced him from his binky! With the stand-up maneuver Tommy's potential for self-harm and mischief has at least doubled. I give him 50% chance of walking by Thanksgiving and 90% by Christmas.
Charleston, South Carolina
Charleston is a place dear to Amelia. She was stationed there for her two years in Americorps. Both of us having experienced Charleston, there were a couple of must-do activities, but no deep need for exploration. Our must-do's included: eating seafood, visiting historic Charleston, and visiting a plantation. Each was accomplished using our narrow windows for outings. Despite chilly weather, we also ventured to the beach. We enjoyed our time in Charleston, but with the night time lows teetering on freezing, we were eager to gain further ground south.
Next on the southerly trek was Savannah. My expectation was that Savannah would be a mirror Charleston. While the cities are similar, they felt very much distinct. I was alerted to the fact that Hurricane Hugo, in the early 90's, significantly impacted Charleston while Savannah was less affected. Savannah does mete a feeling of having been sitting undisturbed for a very long time, whereas Charleston, while still old, looks like it has at least had a facelift in the past couple decades.
As a note, internet connectivity in the South has varied from poor to non-existent. This has been a primary cause for the tardy updates to this site. I have pecked-out this blog post between bouts of shakes due to internet withdrawl.