|May 20, 2009
Miami, FL - Kenansville, FL (38 miles from Orlando) - 209.5 miles
Hi everybody this is Valerio. Have you ever imagined a solar car driving at night? That’s possible everybody.. we just did it!! But let’s start from the beginning.
We left this morning Audrey’s house where we spent a couple of days. She is also busy with Green Energy promotion and she is real manager man!! Great company, great house and awesome GNOCCHI!! I am eating better Italian food here in the US than in Italy!!! Sorry Grammy, just joking!
See you Audrey later during the trip to the Artic Circle! It is amazing meeting people open and friendly like you!! Five people invading your house and you are completely fine with it. She told us that she used to go backpacking and I am sure when you taste the importance of meeting friendly people on your way, you can’t do anything else than being friendly to other people too.
We worked on the mission planning, Wikipedia page and Facebook. Xof1 is everywhere now, time for the world to know.
Direction: Orlando. Objective: 230 miles. I am driving for the first time the van! Cool! I feel like a member of the A-Team or better..the S-team (Solar team).
Fuel stop. Got the first US ice cream..un Conopalla gigante ragazzi!..long time not eaten. Cheap gasoline in the States ehh! Is it worth the price for the low-price? We personally stick to solar!! And ON THE ROAD AGAIN!that’s the motto. Storm on the horizon. We decide to stop, charge the batteries and have a talk together. Too late the rain is coming and the only close place is a church in the middle of corn fields!! What to say? There was all we needed: nice people and a piano!!! Josh and I had an extremely funny jam session!! Oh man that was surreal! Playing funky blues in a Baptist church in Florida following a solar car, I personally never thought about it!! Josh rocks mates! It was good fun!! We had a nice talk with the priest as well and he also blessed our trip!! Perfect right?!?
On the road again and it is getting dark, we want to reach Orlando, but maybe not enough battery and it is getting late. Answering many people: a solar car CAN DRIVE AT NIGHT!!
After 210 miles we found a gas station! Just like an OASI in the DESERT!! Nachos, protein drinks, other unhealthy stuffs and much fun as usual! 210 miles..Washington and Obama getting closer!! Time for a nap! Talk to you soon!
By Marcelo da Luz;
The plan yesterday was to drive ~230miles (~372km) from Miami to Orlando. Unfortunately, the overcast, occasional heavy clouds and light to strong rain cut our drive a bit. In spite of the adverse weather we almost made to Orlando, by the time we stop driving the solar car later it the evening we had covered 209.5 miles (339.3 km).
It was a great run! we drover much further than we thought we could. So, kudos to everyone!
The day started with a hardy breakfast prepared by our chef Josh. Delicious homemade omelet. In the mean time the solar array was set up and charging the batteries.
By Josh Holton;
Departure from Miami! With the car fully charged from yesterday, the XOF1 team hit the road for Orlando. After saying our heartfelt goodbyes to Audrey, we had to drive through some serious rain. We got some great footage while traversing the Everglades. We stopped halfway to charge, explaining to many onlookers that we were in fact not from Mars. The XOF1 was able to go a bit further, but it started pouring rain. The team pulled into a local church to wait for the storm to pass. After brief deliberation, the team decided to go inside after some hyperactive children started running circles around the solar car. The people at the church were quite friendly, and invited us in for shelter. Jamie, Valerio, and I took the opportunity to play our first official XOF1 solar team jam session. I played the piano, while Jamie played with me. I played a new version of “Amazing Grace, and Jamie accompanied me on “Silent Night.“ Valerio brought out his saxophone, and we really had some fun. I had a nice talk with the preacher about emulating Christ, and other biblical topics. After hanging out for a while, and contemplating the nature of God, we had to get back on the road. We got slightly sidetracked, and Marcelo and I were running all over the highway trying to help the van make a u turn in the pitch black wilderness. Our path being corrected, we drove to a Circle K convenient store. Valerio and Marcelo got some chili cheese nachos, and we all scoffed at some flavored oxygen that was for sale. Welcome to Kenansville in Osceola county… My first trailer sleeping experience! We traveled over 200 miles today on mostly battery power from yesterday’s stored sunlight.
|Early in the morning, getting organized phone calls and emails.|
|Our host Audrey busy getting contacts in place for our next leg of the journey - 'the solar car is combing your way".
|On the road again!!!
Valerio (a.k.a. "Kenny V.") behind the driving wheels of the support vehicle for the first time
|Bright spots in the sky ahead|
|Sunny above the solar car, lightning and heave rain ahead|
|Traffic around XOF1 nearly stalling to snap photos|
|Far in the horizon, a large weather system moves in|
|XOF1 on solar coconut groove|
|Little green man inside the little green machine|
|Drivers on the side of the road snapping photos of the solar car|
|Jamie, capturing all from the navigator seat|
|Game off, the football game comes to a stop as the solar car passes by|
|Should I sleep or should I type? that's the question.
While waiting for the storm and strong winds to pass, the team took shelter inside the solar car
|Dark skies over the church were the team took refuge from the rain|
|Tom (Baptist preacher) talking to team members about the solar car project|
|XOF1 wearing its rain hat, very fashionable white visor cover.Watch out Ray-Ban, white is the new black for cool shades|
|Inside the church, Jamie and Josh showing their musical talent|
|Valerio and Josh jamming. Great improvised music!|
|Getting ready to resume driving, even if it means driving at night.|
|Rain water from the wet array runs inside the solar car while it is open, Marcelo squeezing away some of the water before entering the solar car|
|As news about the solar car spread more people come by to check out the solar car. Hello!|
|Macho and Marcelo posting for a photo before departure.
Macho aspire to be an engineer wants to build a solar car like Marcelo but that also gets charged by lightning.