Home Sweet Home
This mother-daughter road trip had been exciting, full of beautiful landscapes and deep conversations. We had seen fun, goofy places and parks we hope to explore more deeply. On this trip I drove from the less familiar western states, slowly working my way across to the more familiar east. We stayed in hotels and ate in restaurants. We had opportunities to chat with locals and to listen in on conversations, but since we weren’t camping we were not as aware of other changes.
A few years ago my kids and I camped across the country, then spent 3 weeks in the dry west before heading home again. One main memory of the west to east trip was something only those camping would notice. We had set up our tent at the Lewis & Clark State Park in Iowa. We had a fun evening with a campfire, and then went on to bed. When I climbed out of the tent the next morning I had been shocked by wet grass. I had forgotten about morning dew, and heavy humidity. This trip with hotels had been easier with not having to cook or set up and take down tents, but I missed the close connection to nature.
Sunset in Kentucky
Rest Area in NC
We drove on from Illinois to Kentucky, a long and uneventful drive. Our goal was simply to cover a lot of miles. We pulled into the hotel parking lot just as the sun was setting behind the mountains. The next day we pushed on, reaching our destination of Charlotte, NC in the afternoon. It was hot, really, really hot. After visiting some with family we switched to my car and drove on to my home in South Carolina. My niece’s car was back in her own driveway and our adventure was now over.
Pitt Street Bridge
Before mom flew back to Montana we took a day to enjoy my town. We ate seafood at a restaurant looking out over the water. We walked along the old Pitt Street Bridge. It was so peaceful; we had no schedule, no deadlines, no miles to cover. We watched the birds, the light on the water and the tide as it came in. Two large herons wanted to fish in the same section of marsh, but the bigger bird chased the smaller one off. While we rested in the sun two ladies came onto the bridge with their crab baskets. In a few minutes they had a couple of blue crab. A man caught a large flounder. It was lovely, but finally Mom and I stood and stretched, ready to leave. As we started walking I saw a dark shadow in the water, something was swimming between our bridge and the edge of the marsh. It was large and dark, moving fast. A brown head came up out of the water for a moment. Mom and I were watching two manatees. We walked quickly, trying to keep up with them as they swam along the creek. The two manatees turned and passed under the bridge right under our feet. I could see the back flipper, light colors on the back of one and a dark head and neck. The pair swam off. We were thrilled, neither of us had seen a manatee before.
Mom said, “That was better than seeing a grizzly.”
I agreed, because a manatee is a vegetarian!
It is nice to know we can travel, enjoy the beauty and diversity of our country, and then return home to more beauty. There are fascinations wherever you look. Thank you for joining us on our adventure!