After a disappointing start to 2020 that saw us cancelling two international cruises, a family reunion to Lithuania and many other smaller trips, we are finally on the road in our International Globetrotter. This trip we will try to visit as many National Parks, Monuments, Seashores, etc as we can. When we’ve had enough American culture we will head over to Illinois to spend Thanksgiving with family, then down to Apalachicola, FL for a scaled down but still eagerly anticipated Gedmin family reunion.
My inspiration to write this blog comes from the Fitz Perfectly’s Grand Loop Adventure. My friend Jan did a very skillful job of sharing the trip she and husband Mike took following their 2018 retirement. Congrats Mike and Jan on a retirement well earned.
Oct 7, 2020 – Today we are heading for the submarine base at Kings Bay, GA. Eagle Hammock is one of our all time favorite campgrounds. We arrive around 1600, check in with the camp host and drive to our site. After we set up we head out to the paved walking trail to get some exercise. About 10 minutes into it my blood sugar takes a dive and I fall down, try to get up and fall down again. Carl gives up on the walk and leaves me on the trail, talking to the alligators. He heads back to get the truck and hopes the security police don’t spot me, think I’m drunk and transport me to the pokey. They don’t, he rescues me and one juice box later I’m recovered. We relax for the rest of our first day and eat leftovers we rescued from the refrigerator at home.
October 8, 2020 – Our second day at Kings Bay we are up early and head south, back across the FL line to spend the day visiting FL state parks. We also sneak one National Park into that itinerary, Timacuan Ecological and Historical Preserve. We drive out to Kingsley Plantation on a heavily rutted, muddy dirt road. It takes about 20 minutes to go 2 miles. The plantation is closed but we were hoping the grounds would be open, they’re not. Out of the truck the mosquitoes attack. They’re voracious and we’re fresh meat. We don’t stay long. The visitor center is at the Ribault Club, a cool 1920s building. We get passport stamps and walk the grounds.
From Timucuan we head to Little Talbot Island State Park, stopping at Huguenot City Park on the way to check out the campground and beach. Little Talbot and Big Talbot have nice beaches that we walk along, taking in the views and driftwood. Fort Clinch State Park is a beautiful example of Fort architecture and we were glad we made time for it. The park ranger is what you hope for at every park visit, welcoming, knowledgeable and obviously enjoying her job. We spend about an hour admiring the fort and then head out to see the battery on the water. Its down a wooded path where the mosquitoes lay in ambush so our walk was brisk.
During our visit I get a phone call from a representative from DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution) letting me know that the person I worked with to get all my paperwork together for membership has fallen ill and I will have to submit and/or verify everything again, ugh. It’s a tedious process and I thought I was finished with it. Moral of this little story, you can travel far far away but your cell phone can always find you.
October 9, 2020 – We said goodbye to Kings Bay and headed north to Charleston, SC stopping along the way to eat Frogmore stew in Frogmore, GA. We sat outside at the Foolish Frog with a view of the marsh and a cool breeze. The food was delicious and such sizable portions, we will have a second meal at our Charleston campground.
We checked into Lake Aire Campground just outside Charleston for three nights. The site is big enough but a little uneven. We got out the leveling blocks and the small error we were trying to correct became a much bigger one. We tried again this time backing the trailer toward the pond a little further, yikes. That was the answer so now we can set up our camp and have that much needed glass of wine. We devote the rest of the day trying to figure out how to use the new MAC books we purchased for this trip. Carl fought the VPN (virtual private network) but finally got it installed on both computers. Now to figure out why I can’t get my photos out of the cloud, I would like to put some visual to this narrative.
October 10, 2020 – Hungry for some low country food we head into Charleston to the Glass Onion. We have eaten several times at this unpretentious restaurant and are going back for more. I have buttermilk fried quail, collards and beans (with a glass of Sauvignon Blanc) and Carl, he wants pork belly, but they don’t offer that today so he orders the fried catfish instead. We shared bread pudding with whisky sauce and leave feeling blissfully full. Folly Beach is right down the road so we went for a walk on the beach looking for sharks teeth and interesting shells. Back at camp we relax with some dark beer, enjoy each others company and fade away to sleep with no cat interruptions or outside noise of any kind.
October 11, 2020 – Walking around Charleston today we are once again delighted with the Georgian architecture that fills this beautiful city. I suggest that if we get to build another house while we are still young it is in the Charleston style with big side porches and a front door to nowhere. Carl agrees, I think. At any rate some of you reading will remember my sister Penny spent a great deal of time in Charleston working for Cameron & Barkley Company. She went on and on about how beautiful Charleston was as I only half listened. Now she is gone and I painfully understand what she was talking about. Miss you Pen.