We landed at a Cracker Barrel in Perry, Georgia, where we had a pleasant dinner and evening, under the circumstances. The next day we spent several hours at the library. I used their WiFi to work, while Trisha hatched some plans of her own. I also plotted a course to the Tail of the Dragon for the rest of the week. Each day required no more than two hours of driving, easy to accomplish even with a full day of work. We’d have a short drive into the mountains after work Friday to hopefully stake out a campsite for the weekend.
From Perry we headed west to Columbus. Atlanta is the hub of pretty much everything in Georgia, which means it’s also the hub of all traffic. We wanted nothing to do with that, so we figured we’d make our way north on the western edge of the state. It’s right on the edge of the Central time zone as well, which means that in June it’s still light out after 9 pm. One thing we certainly won’t be doing is traveling at night.
Our destination was a welcome center just off I-185 in Columbus, about 90 minutes away from Perry. It was rated highly on the RV Parky app. Unfortunately, since the last review, the welcome center had become a lot less welcoming. Shiny new “No overnight parking” signs had cropped up all over the parking lots, so obvious that there was no excuse for missing them. The Walmarts in the area either didn’t allow overnight parking or were in a bad neighborhood, as reported by one traveler who almost had their generator stolen of the back of their rig while they were sleeping.
Columbus was not the place for us, so we continued north along our route intended for the next day. Our new destination was a Pilot in Lagrange, where we could also grab showers. I pulled into an Exxon truck stop by accident because it was the first one I saw. This was the most sketchy, most run-down truck stop I’ve ever seen in my life. The restaurant was closed, and I saw no sign of showers, so we drove across the I-85 bridge to an Arby’s for dinner. It was drive-thru only, but unlike South Carolina the overhangs were tall enough that we fit under them. Across the street, we saw a brand new McDonald’s, a brand new Wendy’s, and a dirt field, all where the Pilot listed in RV Parky used to be. So much for showers. We punted to another Cracker Barrel an exit up I-85 to stay for the night.
Our “luck,” such as it is, continued the next day. We went to the local library to work once again, except that it was closed. Why? Budget cuts? COVID? Who knows. So instead I found a nearby park to spend some time at. This was the view from my office for several hours. It was very not bad.
From there we continued north to a Love’s in Waco, where we finally got our long-awaited showers. This is where our bad luck finally turned, perhaps washed away in the shower. From there, it was a short drive up to Sam’s Burger Deli in Rome (Georgia, not Italy). Believe it or not, this was our Harvest Host for the night. Anywhere that has a VW bus turned into an airplane on top of their sign must be cool, right? Not to mention bits and pieces of two other jet aircraft incorporated into the architecture of the place. Inside the walls are covered with pictures of veterans or active military. The food was excellent. We had some appetizers and split a Samburger Philly. While we were relaxing after dinner Sam himself stopped by to introduce himself and say hello. Nice guy, nice place.
It was a quiet night, and, for once, cool. As our altitude increases in the Appalachian foothills, the heat and humidity has decreased. For the first time in a while, we actually turned off our roof fan overnight. This morning I got some more work done, and we went back in for lunch. Trisha had a tuna salad, I had a chicken parmesan sub, and we split an order of onion rings. Again, it was delicious, but oh, those onion rings!
We drove a mile up the road to a laundromat to take care of that matter. Top tip: laundromats are air conditioned, and they often have free WiFi. I finished out my work day here, as well as writing this post. We’ll be leaving Georgia next, heading north to Chattanooga, Tennessee.