Sunday, September 04, 2011

We didn't expect to go to
Provincetown, Mount Vernon,
Edisto Beach or Tybee Island.
 Amazing places!
August 30 - September 1.  We traveled from Washington, D.C. through Virginia to North and South Carolina and on to Georgia.  The Peace Corps' expectations of volunteers are to be "patient" and "flexible." We have had great opportunities to aspire to these qualities since we have changed our U.S. itinerary as we go!  We have enjoyed every moment --- or at least most of them --- on our revised trek.

Our first stop: Mount Vernon. John had never been there, and Carol's recollection of it when she chaperoned Annie's singing tour with Grant High School's Royal Blues is one of torrential rain.  Our day there was sunny and the grounds and gardens (restored to their 18th century plantings) were spectacular.

Our plan was to spent the evening in southern Virginia, which changed as we found many towns had no electricity, trees were hanging on power lines, and all the motel rooms were taken, mostly by people from the power companies who were working to get things back in order.  The only option short of sleeping in our car was to drive in torrential rain, lightning and thunder to arrive (with gratitude to have made it safely) in Fayetteville, NC shortly before midnight.
Just settin' in downtown Fayetteville

Market Square
After a leisurely morning in downtown Fayetteville, we drove on to Alcolu, SC, which until months ago for us was just a small dot on the map near Interstate 95.  En route we came upon South of the Border and we couldn't resist the temptation to stop at this other American icon (just a little different Mount Vernon).  In the pre-interstate highway days there were signs every few miles giving the distance to the store and a little bit of Pedro wisdom:  "Pedro says:  Hot Today, Chile Tamale!!"  The signs are gone, but mighty Pedro still stands, just south of the NC/SC border.
Hope not to fill this shirt
in Botswana!
Pedro sez:  "Buy something, anything!"
(We didn't.)

This is the rural south.
Pleasant Grove Road in
Alcolu, SC

Our destination in South Carolina - Alcolu and reconnected with a wonderful woman who lived with us for almost a year in 1983 and whom we hadn't seen since that time. Thanks to her contact through mail and Facebook we have been corresponding for the last year or so.  It was a blessing to meet Cathy again, have dinner, and reminisce.
Happy Reunion!
John, Cathy, and Carol

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