It is amazing how quickly a new skill can be lost if not practiced regularly. That certainly seems to be the case as Storm and I skirmish our way through our first day back on the road. Seems we have lost the connection we had perfected while out west and now I can never have the right page up on my google maps, Storm keeps fussing because I am not sure which way to turn and I can’t find anywhere for us to stop tonight. How can Wilmington, NC possibly have no available RV sites in the winter???
Uneasily I try to get back in the groove as we avoid the treacherous snow bird migration on I-95 instead cruising the winding, tiny back roads of NC headed toward a shopping spree at Duplin Winery where we hope to acquire enough deeply discounted stock to last us through Florida. Like an ocean liner steaming up an inland river, the RV seems enormous on this narrow ribbon of blacktop with no road shoulder. We are hoping to visit friends in Wilmington but I can’t find a reasonably priced place to park the RV overnight near there. The 2 parks I call have only “one space left” and at $80+ dollars, I finally agree to Storm’s suggestion that I abandon my fears of Wal-Martians and let him park us at the Super Wal-Mart. I call the local store and they “guess” that it will be OK for us to park in their lot if we stay “out near the edge.” Oh yeah – we are on the edge alright! Storm casually comments that at $80, we could probably get a room and park in the hotel lot. He is RIGHT – we can stay at the Fairfield Inn for $70 and they are happy for us to park in their back lot. Unbelievable!
Lucky for us, we get a call from our friends that they just finalized complex negotiations to gain approval from their subdivision and neighbors for us to park on the street in front of their home. They furnish us with the passcode so the guard will allow us entry to this controlled access community where most of the autos are worth more than our motorhome. We have a lovely dinner and breakfast visit with our friends and a peaceful night’s sleep in this quiet neighborhood where our curbsite spot affords us a lovely view of Landfall Lake. Determined not to be denied a worry-free ride to Charleston, I get on the phone first thing and secure a campsite for the evening before the other migrating snowbirds beat me to it. When we stop for lunch at the SC Visitor Center on Hwy 17, I prepare a crockpot dinner of Chicken and Dumplins and with our inverter on we let it simmer while we ride. After a grueling 175 mile ride, Storm maneuvers the RV through the choppy sea of tiny cars drifting around downtown Charleston (should have read the directions on the campsite confirmation instead of following the GPS) guided only by disembodied traffic barrel buoys floating aimlessly through the intersections of road destruction. With my phone and the GPS singing a duet of sometimes synchronized instructions, we duck under the low hanging branches of the coastal forest canopy shading our route all the while noting the many hunks gashed in the limbs by previous campers. Storm manages to snake us through the misguided routes proposed by Google and the GPS and we finally arrive at The CAMPGROUND at James Island County Park.
Our luck seems to be coming back – this is an awesome place that is normally sold out throughout December but where we were able to secure 2 nights on two of the largest wooded campsites that we have ever seen. After a perfectly timed scrumptious crockpot dinner, we take a tour of the County Park. Here is my report: