I woke up and took a picture to share of the full hammock set up. Rain-fly, bug net, hammock. Check. It doesn’t get too much better than this. While sleeping, my backpack is in the hammock with me to prevent losing basically everything! It surprisingly doesn’t take too long to set up and the rain-fly works really well. I didn’t get wet at all with the overnight showers.
The spot by the river really made the campground special. I walked over and you could see these little crabs scurrying around while other white herons would be searching for their next meal. It was very peaceful to look out over the river.
Today’s agenda was exploring Myrtle beach. I packed up and said goodbye to the other awake campers who I met last night.
They told me I was about 15 minutes from South Carolina. Crossing boarders is always exciting, and makes me really feel like I am accomplishing an objective on my little moped. But first, breakfast. There was a bagel shop the campers recommended named Bagel Dock cafe in Calabash. My bag had its protective rain coat wrapped tightly around it, as I set off in the light drizzle.
Pulling into the breakfast shop, I always am glad to see other cars. If a place is something special it usually shows by being busy. I walked in, ordered, and sat down with my coffee watching the hustle and bustle; casually observing each of the patrons enjoying their morning routine.
My bagel sandwich and coffee was delicious, but I truthfully was in more of a cereal mood. What was to be observed had been, and I pressed on. The transition from North Carolina to South Carolina was so subtle. There wasn’t a welcome sign. There wasn’t a slogan. (Like Virginia’s “Virginia is for lovers!”?) It was just a sign saying that you were entering into the area of South Carolina. I was very underwhelmed. Route 17 was full of more quality highway material with a few good ole bridges just to increase the danger factor.
These type of spots always put me on edge. They can change in an instant from the 45 mph side road to a full blown 60 mph with exits a mile or more farther away. Terrifying, and rightly so. Many times on my trip I pull over as soon as possible into any type of restaurant or driveway to verify that I am not going into a bad transition spot by following google’s directions.
A girl from Dunkin doughnuts recommended 90 to Roberts Edge parkway, and on I continued. I noticed something on this route that was a little surprising to me. It took me back to when I lived in the Philippines and visited other third world countries. Just off the road, there was a bus with the hood up and a couple of guys hard at work.
I guess I just don’t normally see many broken down buses, semi’s or trucks.
At this point, I was right outside the north part of Myrtle beach and was ready to see people walking the streets and what kind of exciting attractions this quite famous spot held. The first group of people I stumbled onto was a lot of middle aged to older people drinking alcohol and listening to some live music. Golf carts were parked all around and this commotion surely was some type of event. A gentleman next to where I parked confirmed my assumption, and I continued on.
The next part of Myrtle beach that caught my eye was for the “Pirates Voyage.” It is for dinner and a show. I stopped to inquire about prices and found out it is close to 50 dollars and is all sold out.
There was one thing I really liked about this place so far, and that was the fact that it was for the dreamers. What a cool idea to put on a pirate styled feast and have an elaborate show to go along with it. The reviews of the place where high, and I kept thinking how fantastic it could be with passionate actors fully embodying their roles.
I like the dreamers. A few different other attractions should not go without mention as well. The Craigs Cruisers from Michigan should weep seeing how basic their race track is compared to the ones I saw down here. I don’t know what insurance premiums these racing shops are paying for the racers to be going three levels up, but boy did I want to race around this with my brother and dad. Think about all the cool possibilities of tunnels and maybe dirt sections too! Even so, well done go cart racing place. The same goes for these incredibly complex mini golf areas with elephants, zebras, and the whole theme just being spot on. So much varying elevation and more, with giraffes walking down the hill to your right as you set up your putt.
I eventually pulled myself away from these mesmerizing modern marvels of fun and made it to the beach!
I was dressed for success in my tucked in button up shirt, jeans with a belt, and sperry’s and was looking for a spot to change quickly. All of these public parking spots for the beach had meters on them! This is an outrage! They didn’t even have bathrooms or places to change. This forced me to reluctantly drop a whole slew of quarters in and walk into the massive hotel next door looking for a restroom to change in. I acted like I knew exactly what i was doing and had no problems. There was one bathroom right at the front desk area and I probably could have even hopped into their pool/ hot tub! : P But I didn’t.
I didn’t want to carry my old sperry’s with me to the beach with my backpack and decided to just leave them on the moped with my helmet. The water was wonderful and so calm today. Without the big waves it looked and seemed like Lake Michigan.
With the time of year it was, there wasn’t any partying or wild people that I observed. It was actually a lot of families playing in the water, with other little kids digging away in the sand, while others just relaxed in beach chairs under some umbrellas.
It had been a bit, as I had gone swimming and walked the beach for little ways. I grabbed my backpack from the chairs, that I had ever so carefully kept an eye on, and headed back. As I got close to my moped, I noticed my shoes where gone! Someone stole my shoes!!! Unbelievable. They weren’t even that nice. The inside foot sole was getting worn out. Huh…. weird. Thankfully my helmet was still there. (In South Carolina it is not required to wear a helmet.) Now you guys will be seeing me in my stylish running shoes that were under the seat until I get some new Sperry’s. : ( My dress for success look with my dress pants & belt, dress shirt, and tennis shoes won’t be the same!
I grabbed some pizza from a neat looking little pizza shop and headed to the south side of Myrtle. My wild camping, safe, sleeping spots were not looking good at all after talking to the owner of the pizza place, and I didn’t see anywhere I would have felt comfortable at. : /
Money to me is an opportunity and I really dislike minimizing future opportunities on something as basic as sleeping. Begrudgingly I booked an Admiral hotel and amazingly got an ocean view for 45 dollars! The gentleman at the desk didn’t have the online booking come through yet and just put me in a room with an ocean side view. Well this was nice. It’s better losing money when it is a special experience over just a place to close my eyes.
I snapped some pictures of downtown and smiled as a Mexican restaurant had two workers come out and dance a salsa, with passion, for the people eating. (I don’t have a great pic as I didn’t actually go into the restaurant but saw it through the windows)
Some of the shops had some interesting items like this massive lollipop!
This last picture is from the pier, and the people with access to the pier charge you to go out on it! There was a sign through this gift shop saying it’s a dollar. Did I have a dollar, yes. Was I going to pay it. Nope. I walked through the attached restaurant with their pier access. I was really thirsty and asked the host if there was a water fountain anywhere nearby and she said to just ask for a glass of water at the bar. So my free ticket skirting that dollar fee, on the principal of the matter of course, was definitely all on the up and up.
I got some more nice pictures and talked with a few people hearing their stories. It was then back to my luxurious ocean view apartment with Charleston on the horizon for tomorrow.
P.S. Thanks for all the nice comments.
P.S.S. my arms are getting really tan…. and this moped trip is bringing out all the most important questions. Do palms tan?