Off to Belhaven

On to Belhaven

I began Saturday sleeping on a wooden bench in the Charlotte NC railroad station. Six hour layover. I did some good napping on the ride to Raleigh, I’ll say.

I love Raleigh! There is a free bus that makes a loop in the downtown area, and it shuttled me from the Amtrak station to the downtown transit center. There I caught a $2 bus for the twenty-five minute ride to the airport. I finally shuttled to Dollar and picked up my Ford Focus. Plain white. Gr-r-r.

Other than getting lost in the city for about half an hour, the trip was uneventful. Under three hours, and though the first part was interstate, the road became smaller as I moved east and eventually became two lanes.

It is so flat here! And covered with trees, tall ones. Makes it difficult to see anything. So different from home where I can see for twenty or thirty miles from almost everywhere. 

I think that’s part of why I like the ocean – the vista seems endless. I know that on a clear day in Kino I can see the spine of the mountain range that runs down through the Baja. That has to be sixty miles or more.

So, as beautiful as it is here, I doubt I could live here. Feels too closed in to me.

I reached Belharbor a little after four and got checked in at the B&B. Bizzie Lizzie’s. I liked Liz. Locally she’s known more for her plants. She has a thriving greenhouse and a gift shop. Her home sits on five lush acres, with the fenced back yard holding a few gardens and a few dozen chickens, ducks and geese.

All the female ducks but one have disappeared. They have gone into the woods to lay their eggs and never returned. Lots of hungry wildlife in these parts. So, the poor remaining female wanders the yard all day in an attempt to escape the males. A never ending duck parade. Liz is going to have to make a little fenced area for the female so she can get some rest!

The stay was lovely and affordable. I encourage everyone to take an extended trip to these parts – and to stay with Liz. She made me so at home and fed me so well! I do hope to come back for a longer visit.

There are numerous rivers in the area and many wildlife trails and observation points. Within thirty or so miles of Belharbor, there are a dozen wildlife preserves. Much, much to see and do.

One word of warning. If you want to spend the night at Liz’s B&B, have a meal before you arrive. She’s about nine miles from town and the nearest restaurants and grocery stores. I didn’t know that ahead of time and had to make the drive back for dinner.

Dinner was fabulous. I mean, how can you go wrong when it’s a little cafe you have to enter through a wine shop? The wine shop, Wine and Words, sucked me in. Wine and books! What a combo. And tucked inside this place is the Back Bay Cafe. 

I splurged (been doing WAY too much of that). Their dinner menu isn’t large, but there’s something for everyone. I had the surf and turf. Utter perfection. The steak was lightly seasoned, and I could cut it with my fork. It may have been the most tender piece of meat I’ve ever had.

The steak was accompanied by a nice sized fish filet, broiled, two ravioli stuffed with lobster, and a crab cake. Veggies on the side. The only thing that would have made it better was a salad to accompany the meal, but there was none.

The man operating the wine part of the place came over with a wine list and could have told me about each one in detail. He knew which wines would best accompany each menu item and he helped me choose well.

Totally stuffed and full, too, of great conversation, I returned to the B&B where Liz offered me some cheesecake. I couldn’t be rude now, could I?

After a great night’s sleep and some time wandering the greenhouse, I had breakfast of crepes with strawberries and a scrambled egg on the side.

Soon I was off to Swan Quarter NC to catch the ferry to Ocracoke Island, near the south end of the string of islands on the Outer Banks.

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