Scott scored a couple more Tags (a.k.a. License Plates) on our drive to the Congaree; South Carolina, Ohio and West Virginia. Yahoo!
We entered Congaree National Park around 10:00am. Annelies earned her 17th Jr. Ranger Badge. If you aren’t familiar, Jr. Ranger Badges are available at most National Parks; they are usually a booklet with questions for the kids to answer as they visit the park. Some are very detailed, others are simple. It is only fair to say that Paradis does all the work for the badges, while Annelies gets ‘sworn in’. Annelies doesn’t dig the ‘educational portion’ and Paradis would rather die than go through the ‘swearing in portion’. It works.
The Congaree was amazing. It is the largest area of old-growth bottom land hardwood forest remaining in this country. The trees are so tall, it was hard to see the tops. The amount of wildlife we saw (e.g., lizards, slugs, frogs, catepillars) was fun for the girls. Another American wonder.
We hit our 12th state on the trip, North Carolina. We pulled over for our classic shot, just after driving through a hail storm.
I failed to mention an injury that occurred on day six. Paradis had a callus on the bottom of her foot, which became a blister during our walk throughout Disney. It is healing nicely, but we are a little nervous about our hike tomorrow.
We ended the day just 30 minutes east of the Great Smokey Mountains entrance at Gatlinburg, sitting in Lowe's parking lot (free WiFi), watching Convoy. Remember it? The 1978 movie starring Kris Kristofferson and Ali MacGraw about a trucker that creates a convey to avoid an abusive sheriff? The girls couldn't stand it. Scott and I thought it was hilarious. Every time we are on a road trip I can't stop singing, "East bound and down, load it up and truck it. We're gonna do what they say can't be done ..."
I’m not sure if it is reflective in this blog, but we are having so much fun. Even I find it amazing that the four of us can spend so much time together, in such small quarters, and still giggle as much as we do. I have so many funny stories to tell, but not enough space to do so. And many of them the girls won’t allow me to post; sure wish they were younger and couldn’t read. My friend Linda wrote in an email the other day, “How fun to have a husband who enjoys the travel, and girls who love the history.” I couldn’t say it better myself. The photo below is an example of some of the craziness I enjoy every day traveling with these three ...
Day Nine: 245 miles (2,794 total); $242.29 on gas ($1,641.21 total); 3 states (12 total); $0 Lodging ($35 total); $10.59 Souvenirs ($271.17 total); $0 Tourist Traps ($698.81 total); $4 Redbox ($22 total); 0 fights (0 total); 1 injuries (1 total)