Friday, July 20, 2012

Dropping like flies

We are at the Elks lodge in Charleston, South Carolina (map). We've been here before and remembered it as a nice stop. Parking is free, but there is no power available. Given than it only made it into the upper 80s yesterday, however, we figured we could squeak by for a day on batteries and generator. That costs us just $20 or so, whereas the nearby James Island County Park, where we stayed last year, is a whopping $50 per night.

It was really a short drive here from Murrells Inlet yesterday, just 70-odd miles or so, but we wanted to have dinner at the Harbour Club downtown, a ten minute scooter ride from here. We love riding through Charleston, and dinner was nice. The temperature was even pleasant enough to stroll the waterfront, as a rainstorm just before we left the bus had cooled things down nicely.

Careful readers may recall there was also a boat we had wanted to see in Charleston. It is the same make and model as the one we just looked at in New Bern which had, sadly, gone under contract just before we got there. Our broker had already informed us that the one here in Charleston was in much poorer condition and probably did not even warrant a visit, but as long as we were in town anyway, we asked if he could arrange to get us aboard.

When he contacted the listing broker he learned that, this one, too, has just gone under contract. The worse news is that the boat we wanted to see in Savannah also just went under contract, and one of the boats in Jacksonville as well. This last one is perhaps most disappointing in that it seemed high on our candidate list. Our broker told us he had written contracts on a number of his own listings recently, too, so the market might be picking up.

One of the boats in Jacksonville is still available, as well as the boat in St. Marys Georgia. Yesterday we nailed down plans to meet in Jacksonville Sunday to look at the boat there, our top candidate on our list of boats remaining to be seen. Looking at the boat in St. Marys, though, presented a logistical challenge. Our broker is actually driving up from Ft. Lauderdale, and is continuing on to Savannah after St. Marys, leaving us on our own for getting back to Jacksonville.

We ended up booking a rental car in Jacksonville for Sunday afternoon, so we will drive to both boats on our own and meet him there. After St Marys he will continue north and we will return south to Jacksonville, where I expect we will be staying at the Elks lodge south of town. This whole process would be much easier in weather that did not require air conditioning full time. The temperature will be in the 90s over the next few days, which means we will need it even when we are away from the bus, to keep the cats safe.

In a few minutes we will head south in search of a power outlet. All the state parks between here and Florida require a two-night stay, which would have worked when we were looking at Monday viewings, but moving them up to Sunday is more of a challenge. With the boat in Savannah now off the table, we're not limited to staying within its gravitational zone, but options are few and far between. There are no more Elks lodges with power along this route. Our first attempt will probably be the Camping World in Pooler, which has a handful of first-come, first-served pedestals out front. They fill quickly, though, so we are not getting our hopes too high.

5 comments:

  1. What a life...traveling place to place to look at boats. Sheesh.

    Susan

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  2. There are an awful lot of RV parks with power pedestals around. Why does it have to be an Elks lodge or a Camping World? Am I missing something?

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  3. Bryce Gaston aka "BK"Jul 21, 2012, 11:41:00 AM

    Anonymous,
    Yes you are missing something! Most of those RV parks are very pricey. Especially when you consider Sean & Louise are on the road 24/7/365 ! It adds up so when you can save $ staying @ an Elks lodge (as they are Elks members anyways) or any other place like Camping World that provides a power outlet free or cheap to patrons it helps the budget tremendously! (if you'll notice Sean & Louise try to "patronize" all most all places they stay even if it's only "free dry camping in a hot busy parking lot!")

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    Replies
    1. Sorry Bryce, but I'm a full-timer too (9+ years... 24/7/365 longer than Odyssey). I love boondocking at every opportunity, and rarely spend on camping when I don't have to. But when the mercury climbs and you need power, just suck it up and pay for it. You don't have to travel far searching for a freebie to use more $ in diesel that you'd have spent on a hook-up. Being so averse to RV parks that you don't have a Passport America (or equivalent) membership is crazy for a full-timer (we're in a 50-amp full hook-up right now in 97 degree Custer, SD - for a paltry $15/night). Nothing reeks of "cheap" like someone shopping for a million dollar boat who's unwilling to just spend $15-$30 to avoid baking. I'm not missing anything.

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    2. Well bless your heart! Thanks for visiting our blog. Watch the screen door when you leave; it tends to slam.

      Delete

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