Day 31. Miles 1362-1403 + 3.5 hours on 2 ferries. “My soul is full of longing
for the secret of the sea,
and the heart of the great ocean
sends a thrilling pulse through me.”
-Henry Wadsworth Longfellow .
You should go see the NC Outer Banks. And you should go alone. And you should go by bicycle. .
I left the campground after a spectacular morning eating oatmeal in a tank top and shorts and talking with my kind campsite neighbors. .
I took the ferry mid day from Hatteras Island, where I had great conversation with a man named Jim who manages a Starbucks in Maryland, to Ocracoke Island. It’s one of my new favorite places. Since I was on a bike I was the last one off the ferry, and since there are no houses, businesses, or public beaches, there was nobody to pass me on the road... until I reached the town on the opposite end of the island! I had a temporary plan in mind to stay at the one and only campground on Ocracoke (about 5 miles before the town) but the weather was still nice, so I did something I haven’t done on this trip and took a chance on riding ahead late in the day, having no plan at all and no cell service or access to WiFi. I rode through the town and arrived at the next ferry dock. .
I found myself buying a ticket onto the last boat of the day, having learned of a campground on the other side. While I waited for the boat, a friendly man named Bill from Pittsburgh approached me on his bicycle and then showed me to the local supermarket. We both bought sandwiches and he bought me a pear. We ate our pears, talking about horses. On the ferry a young couple approached me: taking advantage of the girl’s maternity leave, they’d decided to bring their baby on her first trip and they’re sick dog on his last trip while exploring the country. They were fascinated by my story but I am still fascinated by theirs. They are SO cool... and the most adorable family! .
We finally arrived at Cedar Island around 7pm, in the pitch dark. I walked my bike down the road to the campground, where I found myself to be completely alone, and hunkered down in my tent for another night of thunderstorms. .