Thursday, August 6, 2009

Columbia to Elizabeth City

Altho we have two more days of travel, in a lot of ways our trip ends today. We got to Elizabeth City yesterday on the hottest day of the entire trip. I slept a good part of the crossing, so cannot report on what happened! Am back to my sleep one night, but not the next one pattern.

Elizabeth City is absolutely the largest, most bustling place we have visited. It reminds me of the little southern towns that we used to drive thru on our way to the beach every summer. It appears to be on a little slower pace, but all the people we encountered have been nice and helpful.

Our marina is only a few hundred yards from the bridge over the ICW where one would pass if traveling back via the Dismal Swamp Canal - which we will not. In the other direction the waterfront of the city stretches as far as one can see. There is a very nice Museum of the Albemarle Sound located almost on the water and directly across from where we are moored. We spent most of the morning there today, before wandering around the old downtown area, and doing a bit of shopping.

It was so hot yesterday that we napped the afternoon away, instead of moving at all. I understand it was mid-90's and felt like 105. I can only testify to the latter!

This morning we walked over the bridge and into downtown easily in 15 minutes. After the museum and lunch, we broke into smaller groups and shopped a while. There was a delightful embroidery shop where we bought several Christmas presents and a very lovely gallery - Arts on the Albemarle - where we found some other things. I picked up a few things for others and a few things for me! Two of us went back later to the embroidery shop for more, and then visited a couple of craft shops. The downtown is more of a mixture of types of business and more "industrial" than any of the other little towns - more like a "city". It does not currently have the charm of Edenton, but it is clear that they are working in that direction. There are a number of buildings being rehabbed, and one can tell that they are painting up and fixing up others. I think it will be quite nice when the market eases and money flows better to construction and reconstruction.

By the time we walked back, there was a storm on the horizon and as I write I can see it closing in over the water. We will have dinner on the boat tonight to clean out some of the left-overs and then head home tomorrow with a stop in Coinjock again and then reach Portsmouth on Saturday afternoon.

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