To Savannah

Submitted by Ben on Thu, 03/03/2005 - 12:01

I got up bright and early, thanks partly to the cold, but didn't freeze my extremities this time.  I followed US-280 east from Reidsville to Pembroke, postponing as long as possible the question of whether I would stay the night there or continue to Savannah.  I decided to go for it, even though it meant a 65-mile day, because there was a hostel waiting for me, and I fully expected it to be as nice as Pirate Haus.

That's really 95% of the reason I rode into Savannah today: I wish I'd spent a second night at Pirate Haus, or rather, I wish I'd spent my first night in St. Augustine in comfort and companionship rather than under siege by raccoons.  But not all hostels are as nice as Pirate Haus.  The Savannah Hostel turns out to be more like a homeless shelter, which at $22 a night is disappointing.  I'll give the owner the benefit of the doubt because he's taking care of a new baby, but that's the only slack I can cut him.  Anyhow, I bonded with the other four guests (a young couple from Sweden and a retired couple from Alaska) over unfavorable comparisons to other hostels we've stayed in, and we all have to agree it's the cheapest place to stay in town except possibly for actual homeless shelters or the homes of friends.

But enough about that.  The ride into town was fairly pleasant, except that I learned why the bike route had kept me off roads with shoulders: shoulders in Georgia are textured so that they make noise when cars attempt to drive on them, which means that they rattle the brains out of bicyclists who attempt to ride on them.  So I rode in the lane whenever traffic allowed, with one eye glued to my helmet-mounted mirror.

That's not a posture conducive to sightseeing, but I did notice when rural Georgia gave way to the fabled Old South charm of Savannah.  It's hard to describe, and since I haven't taken any pictures of rural Georgia I won't be able to show you the difference, but the fact that I didn't take any pictures there and I'm bound to take at least a dozen here tells you something.  For one thing, spring is at least a week closer here.  By the end of the weekend there may be leaves on the deciduous trees, and maybe even blooms on the magnolias.