I did run into some pretty crazy, windy, severe thunderstorm weather after heading north out of Florida, but I am thankful I missed the tornados and made it safely as far north as I have. My current location is near Cleveland, Ohio, and I spoke too soon in my last post regarding my van running so smoothly. I did get alot of miles in before a breakdown, but my van started overheating yesterday (Saturday), shortly after leaving Pittsburgh Pennsylvania.... So now my van has been towed and parked at a repair shop for a day and a half now, waiting for them to open Monday morning. Hopefully they can help me out... My coolant overflow tank located behind the license plate filled up to the top with coolant - for some reason it got forced out of the lines and won't suck back in or cycle thru. Perhaps a bad thermostat? Or maybe my fan isn't running? I REALLY hope it isn't a head gasket problem. Either way, AAA saved the day yet again. They towed me 70 miles and will reimburse me for lodging and food for upto 72 hours following the breakdown. So really, I'm feeling pretty blessed right now. I'm in a cozy hotel which AAA's "Trip Interruption Protection" service will pay for, and I've got a hot shower, a poofy white bed with 5 fluffy pillows, tv channels galore, a refrigerator, wifi, exercise room access, continental breakfast, a pool/hot-tub to use, and nowhere that I need to be! I'm not used to such luxurious living. lol. I am so completely relaxed right now.
There were some really cool little towns along that western SC side, and alot of very scenic pull-offs along Hwy 81. The Calhoun Falls area is particularly memorable to me because I took the time to check out the Richard B. Russell Dam, went on a long hike thru Calhoun Falls State Park, and did a bit of swimming in a very warm portion of Russell Lake. It really was a great day that I spent checking out Calhoun Falls, and I had never even heard of that town until I drove thru it and pulled off the highway to check out some signs. My route north was from looking at an atlas and saying, "hmm, that way looks like it would be scenic and fun." :) I had absolutely zero cell phone reception all along that western edge of South Carolina, but that was ok. I had an atlas and a camera, and I had no one that I needed to call.