Saturday, September 14, 2013

Sunrise and Swamp Critters

We left Shenandoah on 9/11 and made what we thought would be a short day of driving over to the coast to Virginia Beach. A few miles before reaching the tunnel under the Chesapeake Bay, traffic came to a dead stop. We soon saw a flashing sign that all trucks and Rvs be prepared for inspection. After about an hour of waiting, only moving a few truck lengths, I looked on my smartphone to see what the problem was. Turns out someone had called in a bomb threat and all trucks and rvs were being stopped, checked with dogs and visual inspections. This was going to take a while….

After a few more hours in traffic, we made it to the inspection station. We watched as a uniformed highway worker stopped every 3rd semi truck and asked a quick question and then waved them on. He asked us if our propane tanks were off and waved us on. We were glad to be waved on into the tunnel, but I couldn’t help but wonder about their “high level of security”. “Are you a terrorist?? No? Go on”…..whatever. We were just glad to be moving again.

We made it to the Holiday Trav-L RV park in Virginia Beach, and I must say, I am impressed. The place is huge - close to 900 sites, with several beautiful swimming pools, spacious shaded sites, and fabulous, clean, tiled showers that had a “rainfall” shower head coming out of the 9 foot ceilings. Camping heaven!

We cleaned up and Noel took me out for a late birthday dinner (mine was September 3rd) as well as a birth-day (I had Jason 25 years ago as of 9/11) for a fabulous seafood dinner.

  The following morning we woke early to watch the sunrise over the Atlantic. Heaven…

The huge spider was under a drinking fountain along the boardwalk
 near the beach.  After seeing that thing, a good 3 1/2 inches long,
 I wasn't thirsty anymore!  Yikes!

In the afternoon we rode our bikes to the nearby Aquarium and watched “Flight of the Butterfly” at the IMAX in 3D. I highly recommend it - it’s a great story with a tear-jerking ending! Really! Fixed some dinner and then strolled the campground in the evening.
So that takes us to 9/13 - our 10th day on the road. In spite of trying to pace ourselves and work in plenty of rest time, all this activity has caught up with me and the Fibromyalgia is kicking my butt. My pain levels have reached a new record high, so much so that it’s making me sick to my stomach. I got very little sleep, and Friday was spent on the couch.

We are very close to Camp Pendleton, and therefore every few minutes a fighter jet flies overhead. They are quite loud, and by the end of the day, I was ready to kill something! I love our soldiers, and I’m glad they are well trained, but I don’t know how people can live hear with the constant noise. I’m talking trailer rattling, can’t hear the tv, LOUD! I won’t miss this place, even if they do have great showers.

We heard from some friends back in Ohio that they were coming out this way for vacation, so we’ve decided to stay an extra day in Virginia Beach so that we could meet them for a hike at the Great Dismal Swamp. It was a bit of a disappointment as it was pretty dry, but if you looked closely, the place was full of life! Butterflies, birds, frogs, lizards, spiders, and while we did see some dear, I still haven’t seen a black bear, which I was really hoping to see.

A collage of the various frogs, fungus and critters at the Great Dismal Swamp.
A beautiful spider web in the sun - and it was large!
Our friends Fred and Suzzanne who just so happened to be heading to
 Cape Hatteras and also wanted to stop at the Great Dismal Swamp.

Tomorrow we head to Wilmington, N. Carolina.

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