Thursday, September 8, 2011

Life is an Adventure

Today was no different. We are on vacation; so when we woke up and saw this (rain)

We decided we would go in search of the wild horses on the beach at the end of Corolla. We choose this adventure today because it was something you do in your car and the sun was not shining! So 4 adults, one infant and two dogs packed up in the Explorer (4-wheel drive)

By 9am we were off! First stop, breakfast!

After we downed delicious and nutritious donuts we made our way to the beach. The limited research we had done (I have to admit my only research was finding a video on youtube with horses on the beach) told us to drive on the beach and look for a green bowie and then look for horses. We were driving and driving (no green bowie in sight). We saw the ocean on one side and the sand dunes on the other side.

After a long drive we hit the Virginia border with a big fence and decided with no horses in sight we would turn around. After turning around we decided to go down the local roads (behind the dunes) to change scenery. This was going well; we ran into a local women who told us that the horses are not on the beach often and more down the local roads. She told us that we would have more luck going one more block down and driving south. So based on her local knowledge we followed directions and went on our way.

The roads are not great (all loose sand and there were quite a few puddles to drive through) but we were determined to find the horses. We started driving slowly and came up on a few puddles that we plowed through then we started to get nervous as the "puddles" turned into pools of water. We were still doing okay until the last one where we stalled out in the middle. Right as we were stalled out we also spotted our first horse. We decided to get out of the car and let it dry out for a bit in search of the horses. We came across quite a few horses (7 I think)eating grass and just hanging out. We were able to snap a LOT of photos (on the SLR, so they won't be downloaded until we get home) of the pack and then went back to the car to try to start it again.

At this point we decide to get everyone out of the car (no power = no AC = HOT car); including mama, baby, very old dog and young pup. We were continuing to watch the horses and figure out next steps. This is when very old dog decided he didn't like the horses and went over to bark/protect everyone from the horses (I forgot to mention that since we didn't intend on getting anyone out of the car we brought no dog leashes). The horses get angry and start to charge old dog. At this point we are thinking the worst; since he is so old one swat in the head would have probably done him in. Luckily we were able to get old dog (and young pup who followed old dog into this action) away to come up with our plan; get everyone off the beach and back to the house!

This is where the real adventure begins (as if the above was not enough)! The car would not start (and we tried a lot) so we had to come up with a plan. Here is how it went!
  1. Call AAA - AAA states they do not cover vehicles on the beach and told us they could refer us to a towing company (A-1).
  2. Find a sherif driving on a beach - he was NOT helpful and told us this happens all the time and gave us the number to the towing company (A-1). We even pulled the infant card and still got nothing from him and he drove off.
  3. Find two nice ladies on the beach who informed us they were visiting a relative and didn't even know how far their relatives house was. They were also very nice but couldn't help us.
  4. Call A-1 Towing (or as the locals say Larry) - he was helpful but informed us he was on a few emergencies and could not give us a time frame.
  5. Call 411 to get the number to beach jeeps (this was the only jeep company I could think of that we saw driving around)
  6. Call Beach Jeeps - they were EXTREMELY helpful and said they could be there (with their tour) within 45 minutes.
After talking to beach jeeps and talking to Larry we decide that the girls (including baby) and the dogs will get rescued by beach jeeps and the boys will wait for Larry. So then we unpack the car (baby, baby stuff, dogs and all) and head for Mile 23 (where we informed beach jeeps to pick us up) and waited.

While the girls, dogs and baby were waiting on the beach; the boys were waiting by the car. This turned out to be good as a local guy in a big green truck came to our rescue. He had also seen this before (If I were him I would name the stupid tourists - especially our motley crew with a 4 month old baby and two dogs; one really old and one young pup). While he was helping Larry also came (actually faster that beach jeeps) to rescue the car.

By the time Larry had loaded up the Explorer on the flat bed; beach jeeps had come and was able to rescue all 5 people and 2 dogs in their lead SUV and bring us back to safety! We made it back sans 1 car (and a few sweatshirts that were left in the car) but all in one piece and generally in good spirits.

We were then left with the task of figuring out how to get back from Beach Jeeps to our house (4 miles away). We call the only cab company on the island and they said it would take aprox 1 hour or so to get us there. The rain (that caused the puddle that we got stuck in) also caused flooding on the main (cement) road that runs between the taxi company and where we were waiting. Duck Taxi finally came and we were saved; I have never been so happy to hang out at a house on vacation!

Below are some pictures of our beach adventure!

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