Just relaxin

Everybody slept in this morning….another miracle!

Then we all responded to the call of the sun and rising temperatures…even the sweet little squirrel just outside our door (check out the tiny branch he’s sitting on).

We’re camped beside a small river where it empties into a bay that is formed back from the intracoastal waterway. Sheesh, we’re quite a ways from the ocean! But the tidelands a short walk from our campsite provide the opportunity to encounter the saltwater ecosystem. The park has done a very nice job of making the area accessible while still protecting it from traffic. Notice in the photo of Robyn and the boys how the walkway even has a rise in the center to accomodate small boats or kayaks that might navigate these backwaters.

We’ve decided to stay here a further week. That’s the fun of our system….we can change the plan at any time to accomodate a new interest!

I can see for miles….

This eastern part of North Carolina is certainly a dramatic change from the west! F.L.A.T.

Then we hit the coast and the eastern vista is just the vast ocean….all the way to Spain….

Mostly gray day, but the looooong sandy beach for the Atlantic Ocean still stirs the emotions. And what should we see but dolphins playing just off shore! Two in the photo here, but there was a pod with a good number of them. Farther out, a flock of birds were repeatedly diving into the water. We could hardly see them, but the splashes from their dives were fabulous!

Ross and Ryan are puzzled by walking on sand, and fascinated to touch it. Sorry, I should have shot a photo of Ryan’s handiwork there in front of him…it was a fairly good representation of Picasso.

Oh, perhaps not. Robyn says I was looking at it upside down.

On the edge of land

We’re parked for lunch facing the ocean, back from the beach by only the width of a sidewalk! Funny how 60 degrees keeps everyone off the beach. But not us….we drove over 900 miles for this!

More, with pictures, later!

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Ohhhh, that’s nice!

How fun to awake to the sound of little waves on the shoreline, and the view of Jordan Lake out the front window! VERY brisk wind, but the sun brought temps into the 50s pretty quick.

Robyn found more Bald Eagles this morning; two were either challenging each other for territory or were mates having fun…you know how fighting and loving often look the same….I mean with eagles….

Shonagh and family came! Some of you may know her husband from Centerville High School where they met: Terry Moore. Their son, Nathan, came along for our entertainment!

She says her work with Ross and Ryan 17 years ago while she was in high school spurred her interest in college to pursue an educational program to research causes of birth defects. She has her PhD in psychology, and is a research fellow in the Center for Alcohol Studies at UNC Chapel Hill. We all had a good time reconnecting, even for just a short time!

Eventually today we had to move on. Made it 10 miles up the road. Had to stop for the night so we can do some grocery shopping in the morning. Check out the view…

Ahhh, back in nature

Gremlins have a lot of room to roam in The Big Taxi. One of them cost us a lot of time, and more than a few bucks, chasing the reason why the generator quit after it had been thoroughly fixed.

No reason for the failure. Worked fine after pulling apart the connections at the main transfer switch and various electric panels.

Great, pay the bill and let’s go!

We cruised some lovely back roads toward Raleigh. North Carolina roads are so nice and smooth….they don’t suffer from winter-time impairment, and the near-constant changes in elevation make for pastoral scenery and pleasant sensations!

We ended up in a state campground out in the middle of Jordan Lake on a peninsula. Our campsite faces the lake. Robyn was out with her binoculars scouting eagles before I had the coach planted and spread out. This area hosts more Bald Eagles than any other area of North Carolina; Robyn will verify that before we leave tomorrow.

Shonagh will meet us here tomorrow morning. In the meantime, I leave you with the view of the moonrise from our door.

Aw shucks

We’ve had to postpone the gratification of seeing Shonagh.

Took forever today for the shop to get the generator fixed and ready to go, which jeopardized our rescheduled dinner with our long-ago caregiver for Ross and Ryan….

And then the final test of the unit as we’re about to back out of the shop……pffffft. It abruptly died, giving a new code for its failure!

Aggggghhhhh.

The technician was already 2 hours late, so we’re parked here another night, behind 7000 volts of electric fence.

Watch our “Here we are!” map tomorrow and see if we move from beside I-40/85 in Greensboro, NC. If we’re over toward or near Raleigh…..yessssss!

Good news and bad news

Wow, did we have a great time with Randy Rasch or what?

Yesterday we met him for lunch, and promptly killed three hours of his day! We were classmates back in high school in Michigan. I saw him at our 40th reunion two years ago, but Robyn had not seen him since 1972. He’s the chair of the nursing department at University of North Carolina, with his PhD in nursing, and with certification as a nurse practitioner. He’s the most casual dynamo you’ll run across!

I have specifically not used last names in this blog for a number of great people we’ve connected with, really as a means to somewhat protect their identity…..because they live where so many of you do. Not so with Randy. Nor with Shonagh, who we were scheduled to eat dinner with this evening.

Which brings me to the bad news.

Yesterday we headed out of town toward Shonagh, and stopped for the night in a real nice Lowe’s parking lot outside Greensboro. Fired up the big old diesel generator for the night’s battery top-off. Died in three minutes! Overheating code, but it had hardly been able to warm up.

Quick checked around and found a big Cummins dealer 20 miles back in Greensboro, open until midnight. Spent the night plugged in to their 50 amp service, waiting for a generator tech to come in at 7am.

The morning’s inspection brought the news that the radiator is dead. That probably explains some of the overheating issues this summer. Removed the entire generator, and have to wait for a new radiator to be delivered tomorrow. Takes two days out of our tour, but the staff here have been just fabulous.

Which brings us to the day’s final point. We’re plugged in outside the shop, with our windshield only yards from an I-40 and I-85 interchange. The noise from traffic is amazing! And although it’s been in the mid 60s, it’s rained all day today. The final two photos show two contrasts just feet from each other. The sweet weed perseveres in the midst of asphalt and chain link. The little sign jars your attention: this fence surrounding our dealership is electified! We’re locked in after midnite until 7am!

Not certain what’s good news and what’s bad news, but it’s certainly been interesting!