Sunday, September 21, 2008

Greenville st blvd

Greenville st blvd
Coming out of Norfolk, we followed route 17, I believe, south, along a
giant state park called "dismal swamp" where at one point, we heard
something in the bushes next to us for awhile, something that seemed
to be trying to run away from us, but at the same pace and in the same
direction as us.. Kurt thinks it was lots of frogs, Dianne thought it
to be deer, and I now suspect a team of timid mountain bikers was
startled out of their mid-swamp protein-gel break by us.
We crossed over into North Carolina late at night, and due to the
swampiness present, had a bit of a hard time finding a place to camp,
finally settling on the edge of a soybean field, something we normally
wouldn't do as farmers tend to wake early and be protective of their
crops... No need to worry though, woke and got on the road with no
trouble at all!
We stopped at the NC welcome center for water and found that there was
a bike path going in our direction for a few miles, ending in a
business route of rt 17, which would be safer... One of the ladies at
the welcome center took pictures of us as we headed onto the trail,
which they apparently wanted for a pamphlet, so look for us if you're
down there!
The trail was nice, and came out by a "convenience foods" mart, at
which we were shocked to see the counter woman smoking a cigarette in
the store! We then realized that there were ashtrays at all the little
tables and that smoking inside was the way of these parts... Really
surreal, coming from some of the most smoke-unfriendly parts of the
US, but something we'd have to accept for the next 2 weeks.
The ride that day was accentuated by tractor-trailers full of pigs and
chickens passing us periodically and giving off the most awful stench
and turning both Kurt and I off to meat for a couple days... Actually,
we ate at a barbeque Buffett the very next day, but who's counting?
We rolled onto Greenville around 4:30, immediately attracting the
attention of a cyclist who led us into town and told us the 2 places
we could look and maybe play an impromptu show; a cafe, and a wine
store... Turned out, the cafe was closed for just that day, andbyhe
wine store already had a hip-hop show booked... Plus, the downtown on
a whole was devoid of people, and a little depressing. We took a
siesta in the town park which sits along a river and soon realized
that we were barefoot on a nest of biting, welt-leaving ants! Ow! Kurt
escaped unscathed, but Dianne and I both looked like we had a special
chicken pox of the feet! Luckily, a few motrin did the trick and we
were able to enjoy a pizza dinner with ease! The college kids were
headed out towards the end of our stay, presumably to drink until the
wee morning hours, as many buildings we had taken for closed up
businesses, opened their doors around then (9:30ish) to reveal a
cascade of bars! A young group of freshmen, upon being asked to
confirm that we were headed for Greenville st, exclaimed "greenville
street boulevard?!!? That's really far from here!" ... We found
Greenville street around the corner, and indeed, Greenville boulevard
made an appearance miles down the road somewhere...
We took our nights rest a bit out of town behind a vetrinarians
office, just to the side of the dog run, as we discovered in the
That day we mostly just rode, not too many distractions on this
particular stretch of the American landscape, just flat, straight,
road... Got pretty boring after awhile, and about a week later, when
it started getting hilly again, we actually were quite relieved! That
night, I had Dianne snap a picture of our encampment, and in reviewing
the pictures, we couldn't help but notice the visage of a young woman
wearing a headband standing behind kurt's trailer! No one slept well
that night...
I believe that this was now the morning of September the 5th.. And at
this point we had begun getting storm warnings about the remnants of
hurricaine gustav, which was supposed to arrive in north Carolina
early in the morning on the 6th, so we were trying to get to chapel
hill that night...

Sent from my iPod

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