The last couple weeks have flown by, since our last post. Sometimes they seem to do that. We have officially been on the road for over 90 days! We are currently in our 24th state! Not every moment of skoolie life is perfect, but the freedom we have on the road, truly is incredible. The work we put into this gypsy way of life is worth every ounce of effort.
We left Assateague Island for Severn, Maryland the 13th of August. Bryon was registered to race Friday through Sunday at the East Coast Nationals at Chesapeake BMX. We got into town Thursday evening, where we were saying at the Washington DC KOA. Due to COVID, camping was prohibited at the track, for the event. We did our laundry and hung out Thursday night.
Friday morning, we headed to the BMX track. Lucky 13, is 40-foot long, with the bikes attached, so we try to get places earlier than most, to get parked and set up. This was our first time, as a family, attending a National. It was a lot of fun. Daphney and April enjoyed watching everyone race, as did I. It definitely helped me get a better understanding of the sport.
Friday, the rain held off until the mains. Bryon made the main and took 6th. We got back to the KOA in time for dinner and sleep, before an early morning Saturday at the track.
We were up before the sun and at the track by 7 am Saturday. Bryon raced his cruiser. April enjoyed biking between the track and bus. Bryon had taken my bike down, so I could tow Daphney to and from the track. This made things a bit easier for travel with the kids. April is pretty speedy on her Burley MyKick and I can’t always catch up to her when I would like to, pushing the stroller.
Bryon made his main Saturday afternoon, and again took 6th overall in his class. The kids loved watching him race. Daph is especially fascinated by the racers speeding by on their bikes. April just loves being around other kids! She tries to talk to everyone we pass.
Sunday was the final day of the National. We were back at the track before the sun rose. It rained steadily all morning. We watched Bryon’s first moto, but then listened to the 2nd moto and main from the bus, as the kids had been feeling a little off. The rain increased as the day went on. Bryon took 4th in his main on Sunday. The kids and I were very proud of Bryon for making his main each day!
After the East Coast Nationals wrapped up, we got on the road to head down to South Carolina. We made it to Carey, NC, where there is a Cabela’s. We spent the night in the Cabela’s lot. Monday, we took off from Cabela’s and traveled to Fort Mill, SC. What may usually have been a noisy Cabela’s to sleep in, due to the close proximity with Carowinds Amusement Park, was not. The amusement park is currently closed due to COVID.
Tuesday, we headed down to Brick House Campground in the Sumtner National Forest. The primitive campground is among the pines, near a multiuse trailhead, a few miles from Whitmire, SC. We found a spot for the bus and got set up.
Tuesday night, I began to feel uncomfortable. I had been battling the chills and sweats, which I assumed were from anxiety, for a few days. Tuesday into Wednesday, I was up half the night with cramps. Wednesday morning, I couldn’t keep down anything, including water. Bryon loaded up the bus and kids, and took me into the ER in Newberry. After seeing a doctor and bloodwork it was determined that I had stomach bug and was very dehydrated. They gave me a bag of fluids, which greatly helped, before sending me on my way.
We took it easy the rest of Tuesday. The kids and I kept to mellow walks down the gravel road, near our camp. We identified trees and plants including sweetgum, black tupelo, blackjack oak, spurred butterfly pea, and Carolina elephant’s foot. April found cicada exoskeletons and we talked about their metamorphosis.
Bryon worked on bags. We shipped an order to Connecticut, with a custom print, designed by our customer, later in the week.
We went into Whitmire to shop on Friday at the Piggly Wiggly. It was nice to shop at a local grocery store. The town's age was evident. Buildings were collapsed in the downtown. People were very friendly. While we were shopping, a local snapped a picture of the bus and tagged us on Facebook. We love getting messages from people that see us, as we travel. We often wonder how many pictures are on the interne of Lucky 13, that we are unaware of.
The weekend was spent hanging out at camp, as Bryon worked on an order to send back to Idaho. We were excited to be making Fred and Mike custom bags, for their upcoming bikepacking trip in the backcountry. They needed their bags by the end of the upcoming week and due uncontrollable circumstances we did not get the materials or last template until last minute. Bryon worked through the day Saturday and Sunday to get the bags done and ready to ship to Teton Valley on Monday.
Monday, we headed into Newberry and Whitmire to ship the bags, resupply, and do laundry. Tuesday, I rode a 9-mile loop on the trails. Unfortunately, there were several down trees along the trail system and many spots were mucky mud. Where the horses might traverse the trail more easily, I had to hike my bike or carry it over fallen trees. The ride was rough, but I was happy to get out for a bit.
We hung out at camp through Thursday. The kids and I walked daily. We observed a campsite where feral pigs and rooted up the ground, talked about the parts of a tree, and April worked on her letters. We now have A, C, and T down.
Thursday, we decided to head down to Florida. We had inquired about camping at the Rock Hill National, and found they were sold out. This led us to our decision to head down to Florida for a couple of weeks. There was a Gold Cup qualifier this past weekend, in Punta Gorda. It had been hot and sticky in the forest, and we figured if we are going to be hot, we might as well head closer to the water.
We headed out Thursday night, making it almost to Hilton Head, by nightfall. We could feel the ocean breeze as we drove closer to the coast. We spent the night in a Walmart parking lot. We shopped in the morning and then headed to the beach. The ocean is always refreshing for all. Daph crawls across the sand. April creates elaborate castles. We all enjoy the ocean water on our bodies. The beginning of the next leg of our journey was already a relief from the forest humidity. Our ability to seek out a new place to park and explore is one of the beautiful things with this lifestyle. Home is truly where we park it.