Saturday, September 7, 2019

Is it the surprises? Or is it the learning?

Saturday, September 7, 2019


What do you like about travel? 

I have always loved coming across the unexpected.  Arriving by bicycle into a neighborhood that is having a funky festival with music and fun.  The joy I feel after a bear crosses the road in front of us, or we see a unique piece of folk-art.

But I also like the little tidbits of learning.  That's also why I love podcasts.  I love learning a part of history I didn't know before, being blown away by the feat of a person or towns people. 

I got a little bit of that today, I hope it is just a peek at the fun moments to come on this trip.

I turned off the route to find a place to get coffee.  I haven't been making my coffee in the morning yet.  Just getting up and packing and heading out.  So I turned off the route and headed into Abbeville.

I was first delighted to find a lovely town square surrounded by well-kept colorful old buildings.

 The Courthouse is on the square and it attached to the Opera House.

 A placque explained that this was the 6th courthouse, built in 1908.  They had a lot of bad luck with their court houses.

Thanks to the Equal Justice Initiative for commemorating the story of Anthony Crawford and other victims for the hate and descrimination during the Jim Crow years and after.

In 1916 Anthony Crawford had built up his life and owned 427 acres of land and had 13 children.  Too much prosperity for the Jim Crow South.  He was dragged through town, beaten, stabbed, hung, and shot many times.  His family was not allowed to take his body down.



So I was delighted by something and I learned something.  Good time.

I got a call from my friend Dianne who is also a recent widow.  I joked that maybe I should get a little something that could represent George and I could talk to it and share this trip with my George. 

She said it would need an orange shirt.  We both laughed.  Later, she texted me a picture of a teddy bear she found at the thrift store with an orange T-shirt.   She bought it!  I was hoping for something small enough I could stick it in my pocket.  What do you think?  Should I put an Teddy Bear with an orange shirt in the passenger seat?

I had Google take me to a parking area on the Swamp Rabbit Trail in Greenville. 

 I felt sluggish and tired on the trail.

I turned onto a trail around Furman College.

 There were several black swans (and white ones) in the lake.

I saw a sign for the dining hall.  I passed it up, but then I changed my mind.  Boy am I glad I did!  What a treat!

Salad bar, fruit bar, potato bar, pizza and pasta bar, deserts (but not too many).  So much to chose from.  I could have stayed all afternoon.

I rode as far as Travelers Rest which is a cute area with pubs, and bike shops and all kinds of businesses that look like they support the trail and the trail supports them.

The trail is busy, but everyone lets you know they are passing.  There are many parts of the trail where the pavement edge drops off 10 inches or has a sharp hill going down.  You don't want to be startled and swerve off the pavement.

Two other things about the trail I want to mention.

They had "Birma Shave" style signs down the trail in spots.  Reminding bikers to not swerve, where your helmet, announce you are passing, etc.

They were cute sayings that rhymed.

There was also a grocery store on the trail with a huge playground for kids.

My night tonight was planned ahead.  I am staying with fellow travelers of the

It's good.  Tomorrow I visit with friends in the Blue Ridge Mountains area.


  1. You are discovering exactly why we like to travel, especially with our bikes. You learn something new on every ride - and it is so easy to stop, read signs, explore and learn more.

  2. Ann you and Fred are amazing travelers and learners. Always seeking to learn the names of places and people and dates to log into your memory.

    But you also demonstrate the emotional experience of coming upon a fun event, unique architecture, or somber piece of history.

    Thanks for Trippin' with me!


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