Aquablaze Day 5: The Heart of the South

There ended up being no river rescue needed that night.
Talking to people on the river really pays off. Mostly for good info on rapids, portages, dams, low water bridges, camping options and the like. It can really save your ass from difficult situations. I’m starting to talk to all kinds of people out here. Sometimes though, you come across another type of encounter. One that moves from conversation to connection.

I met Andy on the river, well he was in his backyard, but in asking him some advice we started in on a larger conversation. I docked my boat along the river and met his wife Lori. (Sorry for the poor snapshot Andy 🙂

We had a lot of good conversation, about the history of the river, the surrounding lands, farms, local businesses, books, careers, and of course this journey of mine in the making.

With an invite, I gratefully setup my tent in their backyard, inbetween the river and Lori’s immaculate garden.

Conversation continued with an invite inside, where Lori chef’d up an amazing homemade pizza. Many of the ingredients out of her garden of course.

I watched my first news broadcast in over 2 months. Detox is good. I’m finding it real nice to settle in, full, inside a home and get the scoop of the day though. Especially the weather, storms are a’brewin. Oh, and I got a shower too! To their relief I’m sure.

Breakfast from the farm was no joke. Every time I scroll by this picture I’m left longing for this plate of food again. I’m deleting it from my camera roll once this post is live!

Upon waking up the next morning, with their permission, I took photos of their land. Just gorgeous. The ridge line in the distance above is where the AT runs. This view is opposite the river across their property. I’m wondering if I know anyone up there right now.

My second pair of sandals broke the other day. I had actually cut my foot walking in the river. Andy drove me up into town.

Again, Dollar General to the rescue. I acquired a new pair of water shoes and some meager food resupplies and more sun lotion. This time I won’t be slumming it on the side of the building waiting for batteries to charge or under a bridge waiting for patches to dry.

I think my pictures of their actual house were on GoPro, now lost in the river. So you won’t see them below. Just the farm structures.

Their place is a true original plantation house. Made from 3 layers of real brick. I wish I could recall how old it was, 1800’s for sure.

It even has fourteen fireplaces. Yes, one, four. If they ever sell it, every real estate agent would assume the MLS has a typo.

I’m surprised they haven’t been propositioned to have their place taken over by a movie film crew.

So thanks again Lori and Andy, you guys prove Virginia is the heart of the south, in both beauty and hospitality.

7 thoughts on “Aquablaze Day 5: The Heart of the South

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  1. Excellent folks you can meet on your travels! Nice to be pampered and taken care of! Good for the soul and for recharging your batteries! Aqua blaze on, be safe, be adventurous always! Love and light from Ireland! 🎒🇮🇪☘️


    1. Well my fifth and final dam is ahead of me today. Hope it’s not that one. I haven’t looked into stats enough, but I’m pretty sure the wettest May and July have occurred in the regions I’ve gone through. This last one on river of course. In my blogging at this point (day 6-8) it’s about to start pissing pretty good. I’ve actually been in river 18 days now. I don’t think I can translate it all in pics and words… but I’m going to try.


      1. From Fox News: “Authorities have evacuated parts of Lynchburg, Va., in preparation of what county officials reported as the “imminent failure” of the College Lake Dam”


  2. It was great to get to know you, too! Hope we stay in touch, and we see you again when you come this way again! It was a terrific evening and morning of good conversation.


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