30 September, 2010

Getting to Manteo

We've been in Manteo for 2 days now, and it hasn't stopped raining yet!

The rain started earlier in Wilson NC, we'd checked in early at a Jameson Inn with a coupon and were driving downtown towards our destination Golden Corral 'all you can eat buffet' (excellent food from Raleigh based national company), when the first rain for 6 weeks came. We had earlier read about the drought that the Eastern States were experiencing; record breaking high temperatures and the risk of Alabama's peanut crop being ruined. There had been early warnings on the TV and we'd heard rumblings of thunder, but nothing could have prepared us for the ferocity of the downpour. I managed to park less than 30 feet from the entrance yet still everything but our waterproof jackets were soaked.

Great weather for frogs, they were all out over the roads when we got back to the motel. Deep fried frogs legs is one of the many Southern delicacies on offer at the Golden Corral.

The journey to Manteo on the old Albemarle Highway 264 was a slow one with rain sometimes so torrential that I had to find somewhere to pull over, windscreen wipers just couldn't cope with the deluge.

Leaving mainland USA for Roanoke Island on the Virginia Dare Memorial Bridge which must be at least 5 miles long is a sight to savour even on a dull, rainy day. The low, long, straight bridge suddenly peaks in the middle, to allow ships to pass underneath, and it's at this point that you realise where you are.

Our home, where we'll be based for 4 weeks, is a detached wooden 3 bed cabin, all on one level. It's at the North End of the Island in Fort Raleigh Historic National Park, surrounded on 3 sides with thick forest, the other having some Nat Parks service buildings. This lovely gift of fruit was left for us from our 'friends at the Lost Colony'. It's very quiet hear in the evenings except for the continuous drone of insects and the rain, of course!

Speaking of which, it's just stopped so here's a picture of the outside of the accommodation. I'll show you the inside when the sun comes out. Thanks to the Park's Service for such a good rate on this and to Carl Curnutte for getting us the deal.

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