Posted by: robinson2000 | August 23, 2012

Redneckville!

22nd – 23rd August

After a much better night’s sleep in the tent, we woke to a grey bleak morning in the quiet RV Park on the outskirts of Statesboro. I’ve never understood the fascination of staying at an RV park for any length of time as they are usually on the city fringes, with not a lot around and very little to do. Chris spoke to a lady who resides permanently on the site and she spent most of the time hampering him from packing his pannier as she was clearly bored and it was only 8am. We left the site at 8.30am and cycled a short way down the highway to the only breakfast place around called the Chicken Barn. The name should have deterred us straight away, but we stupidly entered the fast food restaurant and ordered a breakfast platter, which consisted of a corn based muffin with sausage, scrambled eggs, and a portion of grits on the side. For those of you who haven’t heard of grits, it’s basically mashed up corn with water and looks like porridge. It’s an old age southern food that everyone eats in the Deep South. The problem is, it tastes absolutely horrendous and to make matters even worse, the kind restaurant owner noticed we were cyclists and gave us an extra-large portion. He also threw in some FREE brownies and homemade cake, which was incredibly nice of him except when I asked if they were nut-free, he replied “yeah…. I normally put lots of nuts in them but I ran out this time”. He then waivered picked one up and peered at it giving a puzzled expression. It didn’t fill me with confidence.

We left the Chicken Barn feeling a little sick from the grits and ploughed out 35 miles in the first two hours on good roads with a slight tailwind. We took a quick drink in Reidsville next to the gun and pawn shop before pedalling out another 30 miles in two hours. The roads were exceptionally good as we passed swamplands and loads of splattered armadillos being eaten by eagles. We stopped at the 65 mile mark at a small gas station, where we picked up our second chocolate milk drink of the day and sat next to an incomprehensible old chap who seemed to believe that Florida was only 300 miles away. We were soon back on the road as the incessant flies forced us back on the bikes as we pedalled towards the town of Jesup. The ACA’s route had stupidly failed to include any campsites for 130 miles so we had to find a hotel for the night on the outskirts of town. We finished the day at 3.30pm with 78 fast miles under our belt and relaxed in our hotel room with Chelsea defeating Reading on the TV. In the evening we found a real hole in the wall type of joint called the Oyster Shack. When I asked the tough looking waitress if any of the beers were brewed locally, she looked at me strangely and said she had no idea. It was a nice enough place but we weren’t in the drinking mood, so retired early to our room for some more trash TV.

We had a slightly shorter ride planned for the next day of only 63 miles, as it coincided with the final campsite in Georgia before we hit Florida. The skies were still overcast as they had been for the last 4 days, an ominous sign of the possible tropical storm that’s raging off the coast of southern Florida. We took Highway 301 that ran south out of Jesup and completed 30 miles easily inside the first two hours. We stopped for drinks in a small town, our usual chocolate milk, and got speaking to some real rednecks. They even admitted they were rednecks and wondered why on earth we were in their neck of the woods. The scruffy looking one wearing jean shorts, sleeveless t-shirt and a baseball cap said that the only things to do in town were to drink beer and swim in the river. They were great people though and wished us well on our ride as we pulled out of the gas station.

Just as we made the left turn back onto the highway, I looked round to see Chris peering at his pannier frame with a worried expression on his face. The brand new pannier frame had once again sheered away from the bike frame on one side, leaving it precariously balanced. Chris did his best to secure it using gaffer tape and string but once again we were in need of a bike shop, which was about 100 miles down the road. We carefully pedalled out the remaining 32 miles of the day to the town of Folkston and found a campground called Okefenokee RV Park. It a very bleak looking place situated next to a mobile home park and a railway line. As we pushed the bikes along the gravel track, a domestic broke out in one of the parked up RV’s and we heard a women scream “Get out of my f**k**g house” as a scruffy redneck got kicked out the door.  Technically it wasn’t a house but I wasn’t about to correct her.  Tomorrow we’ll reach our final state and with only 7 days left of riding, I can’t wait to reach the beaches of Miami.

Total Mileage: 1959

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Responses

  1. Looked at the forecast for Tropical Storm Isaac. I think that it will miss you (just as I do!!). This means that there is no excuse for arriving late for school term. Just preparing cricket teas for tomorrow. What an exciting life……….. but no worries about tropical storms. Be safe. Love Dad


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