Dear Bob--A Journey Through the Deep South--Southern Hospitality

April 9, 2010

If I could have changed one thing about our bike trip in the Deep South, I would have delayed our departure by a month. We began in February. I just didn't comprehend how cold a humid drizzle could be.

Because we traveled through several cold, damp and dreary days, we more often than not missed out on the porch culture of the southern U.S. People sitting out on their porches, sipping tea, chatting and watching the world go by is my idea of a civilized society. Cycling though any neighborhood or village on the planet is no fun when all you see are empty roads, empty porches and the glow of televisions inside.

But even if you have a beautiful porch, you're not likely to sit out on it when it is 42 degrees Fahrenheit.

When the sun came out, so did the locals. I describe one of our encounters to Bob.

Dear Bob: Southern Hospitality  (Who's Bob?)

Next week:
Stereotypes: Travel shakes them up.


Photos by Willie Weir

SIGHTS AND SOUNDS is posted every other Friday. Willie Weir is a columnist for Adventure Cyclist magazine. His books, Travels with Willie and Spokesongs, will inspire you to hit the road, and might change the way you approach bicycle travel. He lives in Seattle with his wife Kat. You can read about their adventures at


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