Wonders of the World!

Trip Start Sep 20, 2007
Trip End May 16, 2008

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Flag of United States  , Virginia
Thursday, November 15, 2007


by: Joyce Kilmer (1886-1918)

THINK that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast;
A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;
A tree that may in Summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;
Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.
Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.

I haven't posted anything the past few days for a variety of reasons. One...I haven't been feeling that great and sitting at the computer doesn't help any. Two...I haven't felt like writing much. Three...There was a travel day and nothing exciting happened.
So I'm no longer in Washington. I didn't feel well the week I was there. Part of the reason is that it wasn't very relaxing. The campground was situated in the crux of 3 Interstates. Washington has 2 Interstate loops that surrounds it. The campground was situated right on the outer loop where a northern Interstate connected with it. There was constant noise...day and night. The night before I left there was a major accident at the exit closest to the campground. Helicopters, fire trucks, ambulances and police swarmed the area for a couple of hours...sirens blaring.
Saturday and Sunday's blogs were written and posted on Monday. I was planning on writing a blog on "The Pursuit of Happyness" for Monday, but that will have to wait until I find the time or the right time for it to be posted comes up. I had planned on hitting the road on Tuesday but it started raining and listening to the traffic reports indicated that it would be a slow go as I had to loop around most of Washington to get to where I would start heading south west. It ended up being a good choice as I definitely didn't feel well the rest of the day.
I met someone from Calgary as I was about to leave the campground. I had seen the license plates on her van the day before so I knew it was someone from Alberta, and as I was coming back from the washroom her dog started barking at me, so when she came out to tell the dog to be quiet I stopped and said hi. We didn't chat long. It was the second Alberta license plate I had seen lately. There was also a motorhome parked in downtown Washington. I hadn't seen any vehicles with Alberta plates in a few weeks.
So yesterday I hit the road for Charlotte, North Carolina. A 2 day drive. I had originally planned on following the coast after leaving Washington. But as fate would have it, my meeting with Joy and Bill on the ferry to Martha's Vineyard a few weeks ago steered me towards the Blueridge Mountains of Virginia. Bill and Joy are from Roanoke, Virginia. On the road I am now following. Because of that meeting I have seen some amazing natural wonders. Located in the Blueridge Mountains are numerous caverns carved out of the limestone rock. All along this route yesterday there were signs indicating where to see these caverns. I had planned on stopping in Natural Bridge as it was the halfway point to Charlotte. I decided to stay 2 nights to allow me the time to visit some sights. This morning I went and visited the Natural Bridge Caverns where you descend 34 stories below ground and explore the east coast's deepest cavern. From there, to the reason this place is called Natural Bridge. A rock formation, carved over a millennia, that created a bridge to cross Cedar Creek over which Route 11 currently crosses. The Natural Bridge is 215 feet high, 100 feet wide and the arch is 40 feet thick. Beneath the bridge you can find the Cedar Creek Nature Trail, a Monacan Indian Village, the Saltpeter Cave, and Lace Falls.
On the road to the Bridge you can find numerous tourist attractions. The one I had to stop at was "Foamhenge"...a full size replica of Stonehenge made entirely of foam. I decided to skip the Dinosaur Kingdom, Wax Museum, and Professor Cline's Haunted Monster Museum.  I timed my cavern visit perfectly as I was the lone person on that tour. I was able to spend as much time as I wanted questioning the tour guide and taking the pictures I wanted. Pictures that actually turned out pretty good considering I didn't have a tripod and the lighting was extremely weak. I am slowly learning to use the features of my camera to my advantage. The reason for the "Trees" poem is that it was posted along the Cedar Creek Nature Trail. Various species of trees lined this trail and they were well marked as to what they were.
I'm supposed to be back on the road tomorrow. I'll decide when I get up. I have about 3 days of driving to get to Cape Canaveral for the next space shuttle launch and 3 weeks to get there. I had thought of detouring to Nashville, but I think I'll wait until after Christmas. Then I can also head to Memphis before hitting New Orleans. But Hey....who knows where I'll be in two month. My plans keep on changing. All I do know is that I have to pick Nick up at the airport in Orlando in a month and the girls the next day.

Stats: I've driven over 10,000 kms...but I'm only 4,000 kms from home. I've been gone for 2 months. Have stayed in 18 different places. Listened to over 10,000 songs...a lot of them more than once. Researched over 100 topics. Used over 2200 litres of fuel. Read 5 books. Watched 3 DVD movies. Also watched 3 new episodes of Grey's Anatomy on the internet. Filled up for gas 24 times. Stopped at over 50 rest stops. Been through 15 States and 5 Provinces. Seen over 100 mutilated deer, fox, raccoons and 1 squished turtle. Watched 3 amazing sunrises and 5 inspiring sunsets.

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