I used to think I’d seen Savannah. My Dad lived in Skidaway, a small, gated community on an island outside the city. Jerry and I would visit Dad, and we’d be bored. Those gated communities aren’t really very happening. You’re safe, but you’re bored. So I recall that we went into Savannah once. But I think it wasn’t a very nice day. Or we were in a hurry to meet Dad somewhere after. Or … something. Because I have no memory of it now.
Our visit to Savannah this time is wonderful. The city itself is a gem – beautiful and (on the days we’re there) about to burst into some kind of spring. Though it’s still cold, there are buds and blossoms on many trees and bushes, and the camelias and magnolias have already been blooming.
Unfortunately, to enjoy Savannah, we first have to get to Savannah. So I’ll start with that story. My phone, you will remember, is broken. I am worrying a lot – aloud – about losing my photographs. But the truth is, I’m also a little bit at sea without a phone. This is part of the new normal of our trip. Jerry and I have so much time to talk and think and just exist when we’re on the bikes that when we stop for a meal, we bring out our phones. We catch up on email and news and other reading. I’m sure we look like a couple with nothing left to say to one another, when we’re sitting in a restaurant. If I saw a couple like us, I’d be thinking, “How sad.”
Anyway. My phone is broken. We do a little research, and find out that there’s a Verizon store in Brunswick, on our way to Savannah. Excellent! I’m a Verizon customer – they will fix my phone. We head out. It’s a pretty nice day. The roads are busy, but not awful, and we make it to lunch in Brunswick without much difficulty. Verizon – you’ve already guessed this punchline – is USELESS. They do not even have internet in the store, only “intranet” – for communicating within the Verizon network. They suggest I seek out an Apple store. And the only Apple repair guy in Brunswick won’t be available until three hours later. Jerry is doing his Apple-is-the-devil dance. I am in more of a “Verizon-is-the-devil” frame of mind, but whatever. I borrow Jerry’s phone during lunch (cheesesteaks – which have appeased him slightly) and start looking into repair places in Savannah. I find one with great Yelp reviews: Tech Yeah. Great name. I call them. They think they can help me. The only thing is, this is Friday, and they aren’t open on the weekends. So I need to get there by 4 or 4:30 for them to have time to fix the phone. We are now officially rushed.
We ride. As we approach Savannah, the shoulders disappear and the traffic picks up. This is, hands down, the craziest biking we’ve done. Cars fly by at 35 and 40 mph, a foot from our peddling left legs. For the most part, they aren’t making much of an effort to move over, even when they might have room. They aren’t exactly violent in their driving. They just aren’t exactly caring at all about us, either. I imagine it would be the same riding into Boston or Chicago or L.A. This is city traffic, and though we might have a legal right to be there, we’re taking our lives in our hands to do it.
When we get into the city itself, things improve. Some of the streets are quieter, some have wide sidewalks with ramped curbs for wheeled access. (Ramped curbs? Is that a thing? Not sure… but you know what I mean.) We finally make it to Tech Yeah and spend close to an hour there while they fix my phone, but can’t save my photographs. I’m told – in a very nice way – that I am lucky to have the phone back at all. (If you ever need computer help in Savannah, I recommend these guys. Just by the way…)
And so that’s the story. From then on, Savannah is a pleaure. We’re actually staying in a hotel about a block from Tech Yeah. We will be there for two days. We take some pictures. It’s a lovely stopping point.