August 6 - August 11


Monday - Day Two

Pittsburgh-Charlotte, N.C.

We leave Pittsburgh in sunshine, and drive south towards North Carolina. We have to cross West Virginia and Virginia on our way there, and we drive through more mountainous territory, which Philip likes. It's gorgeous, he says - Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Virginia have incredible scenery, and on one of our descents, 23 miles down a mountain slope, we marvel at the incredible work that went into building these highways that we drive along so effortlessly. These ranges are green and inviting on the outside, but underneath are the mines - miraculously, they don't show, but we know they are there. Here and there in clearings in the forest lining the highway are sites with three tall spindly crosses, the centre one yellow and the flanking ones white. We wonder what they are for. I think that maybe they mark mine disasters beneath the surface, but maybe they commemorate someone who died on the highway. We compare the drive to the drives we have made across Canadian mountains, which seem more treacherous somehow - the Americans have got this road-building thing down to a fine science, and they also seem to have the money for it as well. The mountain highway we are on crosses ravines and peaks with no dangerous curves, and one major slope to speak of. There are also tunnels that take us through mountains - marvels of engineering.

It's one of those long driving days that is reminiscent of our trip up. We stop for lunch in Charleston, N.C. It's very hot, and we sigh, preparing for the mugginess that awaits us in Nassau (even in Charleston, cupped among hills, it isn't so bad). We get back on the road, and are rained on once in a while. The rain doesn't cool anything down. Nearer to the coast, we learn from the radio, it has made rivers flood and is causing some disruption further east. But where we are the rain spits on us and goes away.

We turn off the highway at last into Charlotte, the queen of upper North Carolina. We find a Hilton not far from our exit, and settle in there for the night. Tomorrow is a short day - a morning drive to Savannah, and then an afternoon in that city. We spend some time looking for affordable historic hotels, and finally book one - The River Street Inn.


 back to barrie
back to day 1
 on to day 3


san francisco
los angeles
new mexico
new york city
quebec city