Drowned rats enjoying our temporary home at the Sentient Bean coffee house in Savannah before we could go to our AirBnb
Today was our last day of playing with Virginia, which makes me a little sad. This is the fourth bike trip I’ve done with her — we rode for a week in Vermont, the FANY (Five Hundred miles Across New York), and a week’s ride in N.C. Virginia adds levity, kindness, great snacks, and today some good and thoughtful conversation to the mix.
We were mostly tourists today on what was almost a day off. We had just 20 miles to get to Savannah. They included a little stretch of Greenway, the Chief O.F. Love Trail, that gave us a small break from Route 17. The forecast was ominous but we were lucky, only getting dumped on as we rolled into the city. After drying out a bit at the coffee shop and checking into our Airbnb, we walked a mile or so to the river through Savannah’s charming squares and city streets, admiring the architecture and gorgeous old trees. Inspired by last night’s screening, we staged our own Forrest Gump photo in one of the squares.
We had dinner with Brent Buice, the South Carolina and Georgia coordinator for the East Coast Greenway. He lives in Savannah and told us a bit about the local landscape, both political and physical. His review of our route still to come was a little bleak — plenty of busy roads with minimal shoulders. His region features the best and the worst of the Greenway, he says, from rough state highways to a few beautiful trails. We talked about the uphill battle that it can be to convince some cities and counties of the value of the greenway even when we can point to beloved, successful examples in other communities.
I like working with Brent — he tells it like it is and keeps his good humor. Waiting for us to get to the restaurant tonight, he was talking with some teachers who work with his wife about us and our trip. “Oh!” they called out when we showed up, “you’re the bad ass women!” Brent suggests we get that tattoo when we finish the ride. He gets us.