New Bern, NC, - Isle of Palms, SC, - Seneca, SC, - Atlanta, GA, - Isle of Palms, SC

After a great weekend/family reunion in New Bern, NC, we had a "going away" dinner with our friends, Jim and Betsy, upon our return to Mt. Pleasant and before returning home.  They were actually getting to "go away". We went to one of the favorite haunts of the four of us, recapped their trip intentions and were green because we couldn't go with them.  The next morning they "went away" headed north for the NY and Canadian waters.
Farewell, Smiles!

Our dock neighbor, Laura, has this wonderful Great Dane, Jackson, who was in dire need of a walk so I got my dog-fix.  He is truly a gentle giant and fancies himself an eight pound lap dog.  I love him!
Gentle Jackson

Friends and dock neighbors, Deidre and Bob, just returned from Australia and had a grandson so we celebrated with them on both counts and welcomed them home for dinner at the Dragon Palace--one of their most-liked restaurants.

Dragon Palace
On a magnificent low-country day we put our honey-do list aside and took off on our bikes from Wild Dunes Yacht Harbor on the north end of Isle of Palms with Sullivan's Island being our first stop.

Charleston's Award Winning Ravenel Bridge from south end of Sullivan's Island

Then we decided to ride over the Ben Sawyer into Mt. Pleasant over to Shem Creek.  It was about lunch time or pretty much past that so our noses led us to Shem Creek Bar and Grill where we had a delightful repast! 

We love the village of Old Mt Pleasant so we cycled among the grand old homes and the streets lined with moss draped oaks. Returning home we came over the IOP connector bridge with a fierce headwind. 

Watching weekend boaters load their boats on trailers after a day of boating, sun, and beer, is always good entertainment so we stopped at Morgan Creek Grill to watch BUT instead, they had a great trio--guitar, percussion, and bass playing outside so we pulled up a chair, enjoyed their music and an ice cold beer as a reward for our 30 mile bike ride. This feels like we're on vacation!
Isn't this a clever idea for their bar!
When we have a rainy day, it's always our intention to take in a movie which we very rarely do.  We're 1/4 mile from the parking lot so then rainy days make us want to stay aboard.  We did break free on a dreary drizzle and enjoyed The Great Gatsby.

Enterprise is loving our business!  Another rent-mobile and we were off for Greenville where we visited with our friend, Bob, then to Seneca and a wonderful visit with yet another friend Bob and his wife, Emily, who are also cruising friends aboard their Nordic Tug.

Continuing to roll south, we're in my fave part of Atlanta where I could easily live one of these days. We are staying with our friend, Nancy, in the Old Fourth Ward/Inman Park/Highlands area. Love it! Funky!   My brother Bob's birthday/tree house warming party is tomorrow night. His son, Whit, from NYC, arrived as a surprise last night. We jumped out of his cake yesterday (his real birthday) as a surprise. My oldest son Chad and his wife, Ginger, from Daphne and my youngest, Stephen, from Austin, are also coming as surprises. This is so much fun!

My son, Chad, and daughter-in-law, Ginger

Nephew, Whit, and my brother, Bob

My youngest, Stephen, and his Uncle Bob

My eldest, Chad and Ginger

My funny brother, Bob

Nancy, party thrower extraordinaire, and my son, Stephen

My sweet Bill who exhibited culinary skills that I had no idea existed and our nephew, Whit
The two Lane siblingsThe birthday boy at his soiree!! It was a blast! Haven't partied till 1:15 AM in decades--since my youth!

Bob peering down from his tree house

Bob's Tree House 

The party was a blast and t'was great fun seeing Bob's old (!) Auburn fraternity brothers and college friends whom I hadn't seen in 50 years.  Nancy certainly went way over the top in the planning and execution of it all.  Thanks, NZ!

Memorial Day 2012 we were cycling Central Park, NYC. Memorial Day 2013 we cycled Atlanta and enjoyed the Jazz Fest in Piedmont Park.  Although I've tried suppressing my urge to get upon my soap box here, I cannot resist, and it's something I'm pretty rabid about.  That would be the wearing of a bike helmet regardless of the distance or speed that you intend to travel.  I was to meet Bill in about 50 yards so had slowed in anticipation of seeing him.  On the asphalt bike path was an asphalted pot hole making it very disguised.  My front wheel hit the pot hole, my bike did an endo and I was catapulted over the handle bars.  The first thing to hit the ground was my helmeted noggin.  The fall took a few chunks out of my helmet---a new one's on order.  Lots of contusions and road rash but nothing broken which could've been my wrist, shoulder, and hip.  I'm very sore all over but would trade that any day for what could've been. Since the 1970's when I began riding I've always said that I wouldn't ride around the block without my helmet and this just confirms that.  Needless to say, that ended my cycling but after Bill got me home and was certain I was OK and settled he took off again--and I wanted him to.  Nancy kept me iced and he came home with a glowing report of "the rest of his ride".  Please wear a helmet regardless of how slow you ride or how invincible you envision yourself to be.

Surely we'll be out of here in a week and a half.  Hope we still remember how to do this cruising thing and that we can sever the roots that surely must be buried deep into this low country pfluff mud.

Bill and Laura Bender
aboard Kindred Spirit III
Isle of Palms, SC


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