Day 4, already. It started crap, it ended great. I had 8 hours of road today, half of it in torrential rain. Upon waking up, and looking at the flooded parking, we begrudgingly scrapped any plans of visiting Charlottesville. It was cold, damp, gray, yucky. So we got on the road, and drove with the wipers at max power. It was important to get to Charleston by daylight, for one of the most unexpected realizations of this trip must be how little the roads and streets are lit at night. Beautiful, large highways are completely in the dark after sunset and in many cities, it’s near impossible to read the streets’ names after dark. At first I thought this was a local thing, but now, after crossing 6 states, it looks like it’ll be like that the rest of the way.
So, there was a quick stop at South of the border, a tourist trap that is very well advertised for miles and miles ahead as you cross North Carolina. Well once there, it’s just a small collection of stores badly needing customers with very colorful plaster decorations. Well, 5 minutes later, been there done that, check, next, back on the 95. Rain, rain, rain and sunshine, beautiful huge rainbows over the swamps, but we couldn’t stop. Another quick rant: why are so many highways down east USA bordered by tall trees? I mean we can see that most of the time these “forests” are really only a few feet deep, and so often I would have liked to see the countryside. But no, you get to see simili forests for hours and hours. Nothing but trees for 8 hours.
But finally Charleston happened, and I was immediately awed by how clean, rich and beautiful this coastal town is. can’t wait to walk in its streets tomorrow morning. I had exactly 5 minutes of light to shoot tonight… I barely had time to capture today’s photo of the day… and not very well, I had to shamelessly use iso 2000, since I’d left my tripod in the car. Still nice so here it is.
We had a good meal at snob, a highly rated local restaurant in urbanspoon (my iphone is soooo handy on this trip – it’s one heck of a fun tool to have around, giving us directions and helping with choosing restaurants and converting units.. love it). So I ate a salty mushroom-crab bisque, and a delicious shrimp dish served over the local version of polenta called grits. So a pleasant meal, all in all, a bit marred by the unpleasant over-sweetness of the dessert. That’s another constant of American food so far this trip: why is everything so salty, sweet or oily? I guess they like intensity. 🙂
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