11-Feb-2020 -- As I was working for several days in South Carolina for a series of university visits and a data science conference, and as both of those activities were focused on geotechnologies and spatial thinking, and as the Degree Confluence Project is all about spatial thinking and geotechnologies, I thought visiting this point would be the perfect capstone for the visit. Also, the point was within walking distance of the University of South Carolina where I had been teaching. And thus, after my last faculty appointment, I walked south from the university campus to Wheat Avenue, then east to Holly, passing some fascinating South Carolina trees and some unique homes and churches. And then, about 40 minutes after my walk began, I found myself approaching the Epworth Children's Home from the south along Holly Street.
I was glad that I was on foot for two main reasons: One, I could walk through a space next to the gate prohibiting vehicle access from the south, and two, walking up to the guard house seemed friendlier than me being in a vehicle. After I explained my purpose and assured them I would be taking no pictures with students in them, they granted access.
As I suspected, I found the confluence point on the east side of the loop, very near the curb; at times on the embankment, and in another minute, it was on the pavement. I quickly took video and photos: It was a pleasant winter day in South Carolina, temperature about 60 F (15 C) under cloudy skies with little breeze. It had been raining earlier and I was glad to be here on the peaceful grounds. The ground was flat, and I saw no birds; a few cars passed by on the loop and I waved. I now have a very tidy collection of points in South Carolina, two to the northwest of here, and one in Charleston to the southeast. I have stood on 34 North many times, from California to South Carolina. I have also stood on 81 West many times, from Ohio on the north to Florida on the south. I reflected that most of my walks to confluences have been on hikes over rough terrain; this city walk was a pleasant and easier journey.
I walked back to the guard house and could see that the guard was now to the southwest, so I waved and set off, this time to the north. At Millwood Avenue, US 378, I began a long and interesting trek back to downtown Columbia. It felt good to be at a confluence point this day and I wish you all safe journeys.