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From then til now…in brief…I hope

December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas Everyone!

I left Wilmington, North Carolina around noon today after spending time with family and friends and sharing in wonderful Christmas festivities.   After driving about 155 miles down the coast, I find myself typing away in a deserted WalMart parking lot just north of Charleston, South Carolina.  Tomorrow, I will drive another 175 miles or so to Jesup, Georgia, where I will be sequestered at a Buddhist Meditation Center attending/serving  a 10 day Vipassana Mediation Course until the early morning hours of January 7th.   If you’d like to see what the heck this is all about, you can go to  I sat my first 10 day course last year and found it worthwhile, so here we go again.  I’ll be out of touch completely from the 27th until the 7th, so if anyone needs to get in touch, you’d best be quick.

What’s been happening since the last post?  Well, let’s see…

In brief, it took two ferries to get back to a road connecting to the mainland.  Photos below.   Fortunately all that strong wind that had been hanging around for over a week had died down by the time I was loaded onto the first ferry, so it was smooth sailing.  I’m not sure what Misty and Mosley thought about seeing water outside their window, but other than some initial curiosity, it didn’t seem to bother them in the least.

Between ferries, I spent the night on Ocracoke Island, one of Blackbeard’s haunts.   Ocracoke is a beautiful , long and thin island with pristine beaches, wild ponies, and a historic lighthouse and lifesaving station.  There is a small commercial/touristy area spanning maybe 4-6 blocks square at the south end with nothing but untouched seashore between it and the ferry terminal on the north end some 20 miles away.  In addition to the small Visitor’s Center, I think there was one restaurant open during my off-season visit along with the gas station cum internet café cum sundries store cum coffee shop.  Dora and I overnighted in the Visitor’s Center/Ferry Terminal parking lot and had a fine time with the exception of the overabundance of parking lot sandspurs (both varieties-prehistoric and regular).  Please refer to the previous post if you require a sandspur visual and reminder.  See the Ocracoke Island lighthouse below along with the house where the lighthouse keeper lived with his family.

This is the old Life Saving Station which has been refurbished and is now used the by the State’s Department of Education for continuing education courses for its teachers.  My sister hopes to take a course here this coming summer, if so, she will get to stay for two weeks in this wonderful building.

After hitting the Mainland, I went straight to the oh so quaint Historic Beaufort where I was to park at my friend Babara’s house for the week, but two things happened to change this plan.  After two days of steady rain and wind, Dora’s roof sprang a leak causing an interior wall to buckle and ripple.  In addition to this, the town of Beaufort  unceremoniously invited me to take Dora elsewhere.  It seems the kind folks who live in Historic Beaufort do not care for the likes of a 37 foot motor coach junking up their Historic streets.  So off I went to Wilmington and to Howard’s RV to see about Dora’s leaky roof.

Here is Dora posing with my friends historic house in the historic district next to the historic cemetery.

And the cemetery.  Please notice the Live Oak trees (my favorite) and the Spanish moss.

From the time I left Beaufort until Christmas day, today, I bounced back and forth between Howard’s RV not just for a leaky roof repair, but for a brand new set of house batteries as well (cha-ching), the Wilmington WalMart and Kmart, and my same friend, Barbara’s, house in Atlantic (a sleepy little hamlet “down east” on Core Sound about 3 hours away from Wilmington).  What fun.  During one of my stays at the local WalMart, my brother Hill and his former wife, my former sister-in-law, Frances, came over for a spaghetti dinner.  How funny it was to have a small dinner party in an RV in a WalMart parking lot.  It sort of reminded me of the time I had that pizza delivered to me in a WalMart parking lot in Nebraska or whichever Midwestern state I was in.  Too funny.

So, that about covers things from then until now.

I’m SO EXCITED TO BE MOVING AGAIN even though I’ll be at the course for a while, I’ve left North Carolina and have started a new chapter which will include, at a minimum, meditation, alligators and manatee, so stay tuned.

Oh, and I’ve figured out what I’m going to do for work, but if you don’t already know, you’ll have to wait until the New Year to find out.  It’s really exciting (at least I think so) and completely different from anything I’ve ever done.  What fun!

Best wishes for the happiest of New Years!

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Doug Hunt permalink
    December 26, 2010 1:14 pm

    Looking forward to your blogs in 2011….always one of the days highlights.

    Sorry you missed our beautiful snow….5 inches… but I’m sure you had your share in Anchorage.

  2. Heather permalink
    December 26, 2010 2:12 pm

    Hi Margie,

    It was so great to see you! I am so proud of your spirit as you go through all the challenges in life. Sounds like the retreat might be just the ticket at this point. I’ll look forward to hearing more about your travels after January 7.

  3. Li1gray permalink
    December 28, 2010 1:17 am

    Great update, sorry to hear about the roof of the RV. Hope you enjoy the New Years and your meditation time. Look forward to hearing about the “plan” Just plain cold here in Anchorage

  4. January 6, 2011 7:29 pm

    Happy New Year!

    Can’t believe you will be completing your volunteer service/meditation course at the Buddhist Meditation Center tomorrow. I did enjoy going to the website and reading a bit about Vipassana fellowship in the Theravada tradition–so much to learn. I especially was drawn to the ideas of tranquility and insight. Hope this experience was all you wished for and more. Wow, what a transition from that serenity to on-the-road with Dora. Were Misty and Mosley with you at the Center?
    I loved the great photos of the Ocracoke Island lighthouse and the wonderful old Life Saving Station–both of these brought many memories of my life in VA, NC and SC–such a quaint and interesting area. I had to laugh at the photo of Dora next to your friend’s “historic house in the historic district next to the historic cemetery”–having lived right outside of Charleston for 2 years I can well imagine!!!! Now to complete this chapter and off to the next one, an entirely new experience training for your new profession.
    Love, Silver

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