11 April 2013

The long and winding road

I'm on vacation in the U.S., visiting family in the Carolinas. I'll be back in France soon.

We left Rock Hill, South Carolina, at about 10:30 a.m. Our first stop was in Fort Mill, S.C., just a few miles to the north, to see if we could find my mother's first cousin Virginia's house. Virginia died fairly recently at the age of 93. Her nephew David, 64, told us she had Alzheimer's "real bad." Her white clapboard house with the nice front porch no longer exists; a little brick commercial building sits on the lot now.

After driving through the middle of Charlotte (pop. 750,000), just to admire the skyscrapers, we headed east on NC Highway 24. The road was straight, and the landscape was gently rolling. We still had 275 miles to go (that's about 450 km). My sister Joanna was taking pictures with the camera of her tablet computer as we drove along. She took the first three photos in this post.

As you can see, there wasn't much traffic on a Tuesday afternoon. I think we were between Troy and Carthage (both in North Carolina) when Joanna took these. Here in central N.C., the Uwharries are an ancient mountain range, highly eroded, and covered by a small (national) forest — therefore undeveloped. And pretty.

Later, out on the flat coastal plain farther east, we were passed by a truck hauling Maola milk products. When I was growing up, Maola was the dairy whose milkman delivered milk to our front door. Those days are long gone, but Maola milk is still sold in the supermarkets. Here, the Maola cow is "on the mooooove."

It might have been fun to be driving this old GMC pickup truck that we saw in Kinston, but we were four senior citizens in a sporty white 2013 Chevrolet Malibu. I didn't particularly like the car. It was a huge vehicle with a small interior and poor visibility out the rear window. But it got us to our destination and back just fine.


  1. can see you driving with a big smile on your face, enjoying the landscape and being able to talk "good old times" with your family. The weather is pretty nice too!

  2. WHITE is "the trendy" color for cars in 2013. I got lucky back in 2007 when I chose that color for my car!
    Did you happen to notice a lot of white cars on the road?
    So nice that you could drive your family around - it's nice to have a chauffeur!

  3. There's a brand of flavoured milk in Australia called Moove.

  4. great shots - loved the mooooo truck.

  5. Thanks to my sister Joanna for the road pictures and the "mooove" truck.

  6. Joanna's pictures are great quality. You'd think that it would be difficult to get a good, clear shot from a moving car.

    Any chance that we'll get a family photo? :)

  7. I look at your lovely country road photos, and all I'm hearing is, "Country Road, take me home, to the place where I belong,......take me home, country road."
    It's nice to spend time with family and reminisce about the old days.

  8. These NC photos are entertaining to me since I've never been in that neck of the woods! I'm glad your weather was good, but sorry that Virginia's house is gone now.

    I'm going to Louisville in September for my 50 year high school reunion and I'm hoping my grandfather's house downtown on St Catherine's ST is still there, but your post has me prepared for the worst.

  9. That GMC appears to be in very good condition.


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